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Volunteer Kansas City

Hey KC! As the holiday season approaches, I know more of the metro area residents will be preparing for family outings and dinners! Also, more people will be preparing to make the most out of the extra time off work and school to help those in need as well! During the colder months and holidays, there are so many people that will need warm food, clothes, and a place to feel welcomed. So, while you have the extra time, why not check with one or more of these charities to see how you can donate time to help those in the metro area this holiday season.

volunteer kansas city

Volunteer Kansas City

#1 Project Warmth

Project Warmth is dedicated to helping those during the coldest time of year. On Saturday November 4th 9a.m-3p.m, The locations below will be collecting gently used blankets and coats for the homeless and those in need. If you can’t make it to one of the locations listed below on the 4th, you can email info@projectwarmthkc.com for more upcoming locations. They are looking for all sizes including children. 

 

Oak Barry Shopping Center

600 NE Barry Road

Kansas City, MO 64155

 

Independence Center

2035 Independence Center

Independence, MO 64057

 

KCTV5 / KSMO

4500 Shawnee Mission Pkwy

Fairway, KS 66205

 

The Kansas City Star / Crossroads District

1601 McGee St.

Kansas City, MO 64108

 

Nebraska Furniture Mart

1601 Village West Pkwy

Kansas City, KS 66111

 

Oak Park Mall

11159 W. 95th St.

Overland Park, KS 66214

 

Town Center Plaza

5000 W. 119 St.

Leawood, KS 66209

 

Ward Parkway Shopping Center

8600 Ward Parkway

Kansas City, MO 64114

 

#2 Kansas Hospice Care

The Kansas Hospice Care is always open for volunteers of any age (under 14 supervision required). You and your family can assist with daily activities like reading, games and even just spending quality time. For more information on signing up to volunteer, contact  Latosha Lee at 913-416-2735 or visit their website. They are located at 6828 Sliverheel St.Shawnee,KS 66226

 

#3 Phoenix Family 

Phoenix Family is an organization that helps the elderly and families that are low income or income restricted. You can contact April DeNatale at 816-612-8839. Phoenix Family serves multiple locations and accepts volunteers of all ages! Children under 13 must be accompanied by an adult.

 

#4 Harvester’s

Harvester’s is one of the largest outreach programs in the metro area. They help so many people throughout the year. If you would like to take part with them this season, you can register HERE for any location any time.

 

#5 Kansas City Rescue Mission

The KCRM hosts food drives, makes and delivers meals for kc area residents. This year, you can those in need have a wonderful Thanksgiving! To volunteer, sign up HERE. Fill out the volunteer form or contact Kristen Ray at 816-421-7643.

 

#6 City Union Mission 

The City Union Mission offers help for families across KC. If you would like to donate time to help the homeless and those from low income families, you can fill out a volunteer form for volunteering opportunities HERE.  After you fill out the form and you have questions, you can contact a team member at  816-474-9380.

 

#7 United Way

Ongoing, register for any event, need or volunteer opportunity HERE.  Each opportunity has a direct contact and requirements. Once you find an opportunity that you are able to commit to, you will be able to email the coordinator for further assistance.

 

#8 Episcopal Community Services

Open Monday-Saturday. You can sign up for volunteer shifts through their website. If you have difficulties with the sign up matrix, you can call the main office for assistance at 816-561-8920 and a team member will gladly help you.

 

#9 Catholic Charities 

With a variety of different volunteer opportunities, you can sign up HERE to donate time, packaging meals or serving through special events. If you need to speak with an office assistant for more information, contact them locally at (816) 221-4377

 

#10 Jewish Family Services

To volunteer with a wide variety of services, you can fill out the volunteer application form HERE.  Once submitted, a volunteer team member will contact you with opportunities. Or, if you have any questions you can contact a team member at (913) 730-1410

 

#11 St. Mary’s Food Kitchen

Volunteers ages 7+ can assist with serving a hot meal to those in need. Each month St. Mary’s serves provides hot meals on the 1st sunday and 3rd saturday. To sign up or for more information you can email Jill Reyes, the Sunday Coordinator or the Saturday Coordinator Winfred Gichovi.

 

#12 Metro Lutheran Ministries

Metro Lutheran Ministries has a wide variety of ways to volunteer. You can call Amy Viets at  816.285.3154. Or to sign up for a specific event, head over to their website to see what opportunities you can participate in.

 

Most of these charities are open to families of all ages, however, they do require adult supervision for  younger kids. I have spoke with many of these organizations and they would LOVE to have you come out and lend a helping hand. Especially during the colder and holiday months.  See you out there volunteering!

From iFamily to Yours,

 

 

 


30 Days & 30 Ways to Give Back in November in KC

Autumn weather is upon us here in the metro area and the month of November offers the ideal opportunity to jump start a season of giving back to others. Brigette, from our iFamilyKC Mom Squad team shares 30 ways to give back in 30 days across Kansas City today on the blog. Take a look…

give back in Kansas City

30 Days & 30 Ways to Give Back in November in KC

Hey there KC! Can you believe it’s already November? The last week and a half, I’ve had the opportunity to spend some much-needed time away out here in the beautiful Ozarks with my family! The temperature has been consistently cool, the leaves are in a wide variety of colors and Fall is definitely in the air. Pretty soon we will be waking up to bare trees, rainy days, and chilly air every day. I honestly couldn’t be more thankful to have this time with my family!

If you didn’t already know, November is National “Be Thankful” month and, with practically every day in November being centered around Thanksgiving, I can see why it is! So, in honor of this wonderful fall season and the month that celebrates thankfulness, I wanted to share a different way you can participate in a fun and caring way. So here are 30 ways you can give back in 30 days!

Ways to Help Others:

  1. Volunteer at a shelter
  2. Carry someone’s grocery bags for them
  3. Buy the person behind you coffee/ lunch
  4. Pick up trash in your neighborhood
  5. Volunteer at your child’s school
  6. Bring treats for co-workers
  7. Write a handwritten letter to a friend or family member
  8. Run errands for a busy mom/dad
  9. Spend time with those at a nursing home
  10. Give away blankets or jackets to the homeless
  11. Donate clothes to a shelter or Goodwill
  12. Volunteer to read a the library or your kids classroom
  13. Help a new mom or dad with chores around the house
  14. Send get well cards to the hospital for strangers
  15. Volunteer at a soup kitchen
  16. Babysit for a night for free
  17. Leave a bigger than usual tip
  18. Organize a can food drive/ donate to one
  19. Pet sit for a friend or family member
  20. Invite someone new from your church/ neighborhood to your home for dinner
  21. Donate toys your kiddo no longer plays with to a family in need
  22. Volunteer at an animal shelter
  23. Say something nice to someone
  24. Tell a manager about the wonderful service you received from their employee
  25. Compliment a stranger
  26. Send someone an anonymous small gift
  27. Give someone a “thank you for all you do” note
  28. Offer a warm meal to someone homeless
  29. Invite someone to Thanksgiving Dinner
  30. Bring a coworker coffee

There are so many different ways to give back to those around you, or even to simply spread kindness. Giving back is not only limited to November, so you can implement these ideas all year long! Whenever you give back, you naturally feel better! It truly does something to us and in return, it encourages others to do the same. I can’t count how many times an act of kindness from myself or my family has inspired someone else to do the same and vice versa! So, the next time you are about to get that much-needed pumpkin spice latte or you see someone down in the dumps… think to yourself, how can I give back to someone and inspire them to do something kind as well.

From iFamily to Yours,

emailsignupforblog3


Giving Back In The Wake Of A Tragedy

Tales of destruction from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma have dominated the news cycle over the past couple of weeks.  Our hearts are broken as we hear stories of those who have lost homes and loved ones in the path of these violent storms.  But there is a secondary group of stories that inevitably comes out of these tragedies.  The stories of the hometown heroes who risk life and limb to save their neighbors.  These stories capture our hearts, and renew hope in the human spirit.  Gabrielle, from the iFamily Mom and Dad Squad is here to show us why giving back is so important.

give back

Giving Back in the Wake of Tragedy

While my family and I cannot afford to go to coastal regions and help with the clean-up efforts, there are things we can do here in our own hometown to be a blessing to our friends and neighbors who are down on their luck.  Here are few ideas you might want to try.

Volunteering at a local food pantry

Local pantries are always look for groups to help them serve.  They are also looking for volunteers to help them clean and organize their pantries.  Even the little ones can help.  When my daughter was about four, she was given the job of passing out salt and pepper in the dining room of one of the local shelters.  She felt like she had the most important job in the world, and it gave the residents a good chuckle to see her tiny little hands handing them their condiments.

Ronald McDonald House

This charity houses families whose loved ones are being treated at Children’s Mercy Hospital.  These families are often strapped for cash as they have to cover medical costs and transportation.  Many of these families are from out-of-state.  As such, the Ronald McDonald House is usually looking for groups who are willing to cook and serve families who are temporarily housed in their facilities.  This can be costly, as several families are housed in each unit.  Each volunteer group is responsible for providing the meal, as well as preparing the meal and cleaning up after.  It is best to do this activity with a larger group.  I recommend joining with a social or church group when taking on this endeavor.

Donating Toys to a Women’s Shelter

Women who leave abusive homes often leave home with nothing but their children and the clothes on their backs.  The children, who are already facing a traumatic situation, have little to comfort them.  This is when your child’s barely and rarely touched toys come in handy.  That old teddy bear that’s been sitting on the bookshelf untouched for the last six months could provide a hug to some child in desperate need of unconditional love.

Shirley Chisholm, a personal hero of mine, said, “Service is the rent we pay for the privilege of living on this earth.”  Teaching our children to serve others will undoubtedly impact them.  Serving with our children will undoubtedly impact the world, even if it is just a small corner of it.

From iFamily to Yours,

Gabrielle

 


7 Simple Ways You Can Make the World a Better Place

We often talk, in my household, about ways that we can work to make the world a better place, even if it’s just our little corner of it and summertime provides the ideal opportunity to do something meaningful with the extra time on your hands. Our post today comes from Brigette, of our iFamilyKC Mom Squad team, and is full of great ideas for small things you and your family can do to make a difference today. Take a look…

make the world a better place

7 Simple Ways You Can Make The World A Better Place

A lot of times, people feel that the only time to give back is during the holidays or when it’s those cold and rainy months. But the truth is, we can always give back! There are so many ways that we can give back to our family, friends and community, all it takes is an idea, a plan, and action.

Outside of winter, summertime may be the most crucial time to give back! It is so hot, there are barely any shady spots, and you know Kansas City… it is humid! Giving back isn’t just for those suffering from being in the heat all day, there are those that won’t be able to experience it at all.

So if you and your family are wanting to give back this summer, here are a few ideas that don’t cost a lot of money or time, but can make a huge impact!

1. Water

Passing out water to those in need is a great way to help them combat the heat. You can keep a pack of water in your car whenever you are commuting to work, play groups and the park. Or if you can’t keep water in your car, you can plan a day to drive around your area with a cooler full of cold water and dedicate an hour or so to passing out ice cold water.

2. Carrying Groceries

A lot of times when our elders or those that are not physically able to carry heavy items go to the store, a paper boy or girl will help them carry their items to their car. But what about when they get home? Asking friends or relatives if you can help them shop and put away groceries is a simple way that your family of all ages can help with. All it takes is a phone call.

3. Card Kits

Since we home school, I am always looking for ways we can volunteer. A few months ago, I contacted Children’s Mercy Hospital and they shared with me an awesome way to give back! Card kits are simply a bag filled with paper, stickers, crayons, markers or any other items you would want to decorate a card with. A lot of times these kiddos don’t get spend time with their loved ones for special events or holidays. They said the kiddos loved receiving card kits!

4. Babysitting

We all know that mom or dad who is constantly working, planning playgroups or volunteering their time. And sometimes they forget to take time for themselves. So why not give back by watching their kids for a few hours so they could relax! If you have older kids, they could also volunteer to babysit. This would also be a great way for them to prove how responsible they are and potentially turn into a lucrative job.

5. Care Packs

Like passing out water, there are other things that are so crucial to those in need. Care packs are small bags filled with daily necessities. Items like a toothbrush and tooth paste, nonperishable snacks, soap and rags are perfect items to help those out daily. The dollar tree even carries ones that expand with water! They start out as a small ball or odd shape, but once water hits them, they expand to a full washcloth.

6. Housework

Another way to give back is by simply helping around the house. Sometimes people are not able to take care of small tasks throughout their home. So helping them with small tasks will surely take a load off of them.

7.  Time

Out of all these ideas, the best way to give back is just time. The most impactful way to give back is just giving a little time to those in need. I hope these ideas will help you and your family brainstorm on how you can give back this summer.

From iFamily to Yours,

emailsignupforblog3


Back to School Tips: How to Volunteer in Your Child’s Classroom

Howdy, Kansas City! School is back in full swing for most of us, and some of you parents may be looking for ways to continue connecting with your kiddos during the school year. Why not follow our Mom Squad Ambassador, Erin’s advice and volunteer at their school? Below she gives us a few ideas to get started. Check it out!

Back to School Tips: How to Volunteer in Your Child's Classroom

Back to School Tips:
How to Volunteer in Your Child’s Classroom

 

Last year my daughter started Kindergarten. I was SO excited for her that I wanted to sit next to her in class all day long. However, that was pretty unrealistic! The next best thing was to sign up to volunteer in her school. I thought I’d share with you some ideas on how you can get involved in your child’s school. Your child will love seeing you around school. Being hands on shows them how important their education is to you. You will also benefit from getting involved because you can truly get a feel for the school’s dynamics, as well as see firsthand how things are done in your child’s classroom.

 

Join the PTA (Parent-Teacher Association)

I joined the PTA last year and they had regular meetings in the evenings that were convenient for my schedule. They also had a Facebook group that was very helpful to find out events and things going on at my child’s school

Volunteer in the classroom, library or on field trips

The school is always needing help with small groups of students, testing skills, or even just stuffing the cubbies with notes to go home. I had the opportunity to be heavily involved every week in the classroom, with field trips, and was the lead for the school parties. Even if you work full time and can take off a few hours in the afternoon to help with a party or donate something, every little bit helps!

Connect to your school’s website and social media outlets

Some schools might even have their own app to download with tons of information from lunch menus to calendars. My child’s teacher has a Twitter account and I am looking forward to seeing pictures and updates online.

 

Try to attend

Back to school night, open house, parent teacher conferences, music performances and any other meetings offered to parents.

 

 

If you are interested in working directly with students, check with your child’s school first. They may require some additional training before interacting with students. I found that getting directly involved with my child’s class and school was so incredibly rewarding! I got to know her teacher and classmates so well and seeing their faces light up when I came every week really made me feel like I was making a difference in a small part of this world.

 

What are some ways you have gotten involved with your child’s school? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below!

 

From iFamily to Yours,
iFamMomSqdErinV2

 


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The Importance Of Giving Back: 5 Ways To Make a Difference

Good Morning, Kansas City!

As the parent of a five year old, I am constantly in search of new ways I can teach my daughter about this fascinating world we’re living in. Like you, I understand the importance of giving back to others and want to instill that same desire to make a difference in my own children. Today, we’re teaming up with our friends at Children’s Mercy, who recently launched the Small Change – Big Difference giving campaign, to provide you with five easy ways your family can give back to our community. Take a look …

ways to make a difference

5 Easy Ways to Make a Difference

make a difference

#1 Be Giving Of Your Time

Volunteerism has always been an important part of my life and I’m so thrilled it’s something my daughter has taken an interest in as well. There is no shortage of opportunity to give of your time here in the metro area and there are many organizations you can give back to that will directly impact your neighbors. Here are three ways our family likes to give back right here in the metro:

  • Hospitals – There are many ways high school and college students as well as adults here in the metro area can volunteer time at Children’s Mercy, but one of my personal favorites is the opportunity to host a Wednesday Night Live, where you and eight or nine of your friends can get together and provide entertainment for CMH patients.
  • Diaper Bank – Diapering children is expensive and it’s a need that isn’t covered by social programs, leaving families with the out of pocket expense these babies simply cannot go without. Our local diaper bank in Lenexa collects, sorts, and distributes diapers to groups that directly impact families.
  • Food Bank – There are several opportunities for volunteering in the warehouse of our local food bank that collects non-perishable items to distribute to families in need. You can spend time organizing, sorting, and packaging items that will go out into the community.

make a difference

#2 Be Giving Of Your Things

My husband and I sometimes joke that our daughter is a hoarder. Her things are everywhere and, simply put, she just has too much stuff. So anytime she wants something new (which, thankfully, isn’t that frequent), we have her select seven to ten things she wants to donate to others in exchange for the one new item. Not only does this help us keep the clutter at bay, it also benefits the community as well. You can donate your unwanted wearable items, small appliances and electronics to organizations that own and operate local thrift shops in the area and make a difference simply by decluttering your home.

If you’ve got the extra time to spare and are feeling up to the task, one of the best ways to get rid of unwanted or unneeded items is to host a garage sale. The extra income gives you the opportunity to make a difference right here at home. By donating some or all of the money collected from your garage sale to an organization like Children’s Mercy, you can directly impact children here in KC.

Make a difference

#3 Be Giving During Your Occasion

As parents with young children, there always seems to be an occasion where we’re either giving or receiving gifts. Ask your friends and family to donate or give items in your honor at your next event. Here are a few ideas:

  • Birthday parties are a great time to collect new toys, books, and games for organizations that impact kids in need. Children’s Mercy Hospital accepts brand new items year round for patients staying at the hospital and your family will have the opportunity to help support an incredible cause you can feel good about. Stay tuned for an exciting new program that Children’s Mercy is launching later this summer to make giving back at birthday parties even more fun.
  • Baby showers are another great opportunity to help give back to the community. Ask guests to bring an extra package of diapers, wipes or other baby items to donate to a local shelter that will help support local women and children here in Kansas City.
  • Holiday Meals provide the ideal time to ask friends and family to bring non-perishable pantry items to donate to a local organization or shelter that will directly impact the community. Larger organizations have boxes and barrels you can pick up, fill and bring back making the process very easy.

make a difference

#4 Be Giving Of Your Night Out

Date nights are such an important part of maintaining a healthy marriage when you’re parenting, and attending special events and fundraisers not only provides you with a fun evening out with your significant other but also makes a difference in our local community. Be giving of your nights out by attending special activities around the metro supporting incredible organizations around town. Children’s Mercy, in addition to their ongoing community activities and fundraisers, hosts two major events each year that you can get involved with, like their annual Red Hot Night and Big Slick Fundraiser.

 

make a difference

#5 Be Giving Of Your Change

When I was growing up, like many of you I suspect, my family had a large glass jar we collected spare change in throughout the years. Over time, that jar became too heavy to carry and it was a great reminder that the small change we were giving each day added up over time.

Children’s Mercy just launched a new fundraiser that applies the same logic to your giving. The Small Change – Big Difference campaign encourages families to collect their change, that really adds up over time in adorable Children’s Mercy piggy banks. Purchase your piggy bank today to make a major and lasting impact on the hospital.

make a difference

If we all do what we can, with what we have, we can make a huge difference in our little corner of the world. iFamilyKC is proud to partner with Children’s Mercy to bring you inspiring content, tips and tricks, and helpful resources. Purchase your Small Change – Big Difference piggy bank today for only $35 and start your family’s contribution. Check out the Children’s Mercy website for more information on this program as well as some tips for families wanting to give back. Everything you do makes a difference!

We want to hear from you!

Tell us how your family loves to give back by sharing on your Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

Be sure to use the hashtag #smallchange  so we can follow along!

From iFamily to Yours,

Holli

Holli_iFamilyKCTeam

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