The most rewarding gift: Volunteering
Published: November 25, 2009
If you have any free time during the holiday season, many Island groups can use volunteer help to accomplish their missions. These worthy organizations reach into the community working to ensure that no one is neglected or forgotten. Most volunteers find that they gain more than they give through participation.
Big Brothers, Big Sisters is asking for gifts such as hats, mittens, and blankets for needy Island families. It also needs volunteers to serve as Big Brothers or Big Sisters for young Islanders. 508-696-5497.
The Red Stocking Fund is setting up donation boxes for toys, money, and other items around the Island. It depends on volunteers to come to Grace Church in Vineyard Haven to help gift wrap the presents that will be distributed. 508-693-3187.
Windemere Nursing and Rehabilitation Center needs people willing to help lead art projects, read aloud, or provide entertainment to their residents. There is also the Buddy Program that depends on caring Islanders to volunteer. 508-693-6465, ext. 722.
Grace Church needs the support of Islanders to help with their community dinners, setting up, serving, etc. 508-693-0332.
Community Services Family Center is looking for contributions of items that families need, such as car seats, books, and miscellaneous things for its Swap Shop. They are also looking for volunteers to help run it. 508-693-7900.
Tisbury Senior Center is looking for volunteers to deliver Christmas dinner meals. 508-696-4205.
Martha's Vineyard Animal Shelter is always looking for volunteers year-round.
Family-to-Family Program needs people to help create Christmas baskets on Wednesday, Dec. 16, at 12 noon, and volunteers to help carry out and deliver the baskets at 1 pm; 508-693-5339.
The PeaceCraft Holiday Shop at Pyewacket's sells crafts and gifts from third world cooperatives. Volunteer sales people are needed daily until Christmas. Call Margaret at 508-693-0368 or Meg at 508-951-8106.
All these activities make a critical difference to the people receiving the benefits. Through them, the Island has earned a reputation as a place where people look after their own, a place with an exceptionally strong sense of community.