National Service Blog

  • Posted on Feb 11, 2016

    Rebecca is confined to a wheelchair and has some difficulty speaking due to her Cerebral Palsy. Three days a week, however, she has been a devoted volunteer for the Salinas Family YMCA in California for over two years. She greets people with a wonderful smile and her entire body, joking with “the regulars” and exemplifying the kind of welcoming atmosphere that YMCA wishes to offer its communities.

    “I wanted to do different kinds of work and to help people,” said Rebecca when asked why she chose to volunteer with the Salinas Community YMCA. Working at the YMCA “makes me very happy. I have a lot of friends. I help people out. People are nice to me. I have Cerebral Palsy and I am in a wheelchair. I have a speech problem.” Because of the Y, “I’m more comfortable talking with other people. The YMCA has given me more self confidence. I’m more comfortable with people. My mom is happy that I work at the YMCA.”

    This spring, Rebecca made a step toward independence and moved into an apartment with a roommate. After working at the Y for a while, “it made me think. Think I could live on my own.”

    “Rebecca helps us achieve our goal to build positive relationships with the members we see each day,” says Dave Kretsinger, executive director. “Our members look forward to seeing and interacting with Rebecca. She comes to work with a positive attitude and is a role model for other staff members. Rebecca and our members celebrate holidays, birthday and...

  • Posted on Aug 11, 2009
    Parts of the 30th Street Industrial Corridor in the heart of Milwaukee, Wisconsin, recently got a bit of a face lift. Nearly 40 volunteers donned gloves, grabbed shovels and rakes, and hauled trash bag after trash bag to dumpsters in an effort to clean up streets, alleys, and abandoned properties in the area.
  • Posted on Aug 11, 2009
    The North Riverside Public Library, the heart of the Village of North Riverside, IL, had a huge project that needed to be completed as quickly as possible in order to make its DVD collection available to the patrons with the least amount of interruption and inconvenience. The time consuming project consisted of transferring over 1300 DVDs from old CD cases to new, more durable security-lined cases. How could this project be accomplished with the small staff working on the project only during slivers of time between their other projects?
  • Posted on Aug 11, 2009
    On August 4th, six of our Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) volunteers served 18 hours assisting with the annual “National Night Out.” This community event provides our entire community with heightened crime and drug prevention awareness; generates support for and participation in local anticrime programs; strengthens neighborhood spirit and police-community partnerships; and sends a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fightin
  • Posted on Aug 11, 2009
    Linda Loi has been volunteering in the Golden Gate National Park for the last five years. First in the Urban Trail Blazers Program and most recently with the program Inspiring Young Emerging Leaders, Loi has dedicated hours of her time each week to giving back, not just environmentally but also as a youth leader and role model to others in her programs.
  • Posted on Aug 10, 2009
  • Posted on Aug 10, 2009
  • Posted on Aug 10, 2009
    For my birthday on July 12th, I invited about 20 friends to join me for a fun beach day by the ocean in Waikiki. I requested that instead of gifts and flower leis, people please bring cans of food to be donated to my church’s food pantry. Much to my surprise I got a good turn out and a laundry basket full of cans (SPAM).
  • Posted on Aug 10, 2009
    Every fall, I am in charge of getting items donated to put in care packages to our deployed soldiers. In November, we mail out these items to Minnesota based units in time for a Christmas arrival.
  • Posted on Aug 10, 2009
    “Service is a core component of building the esteem and values of children. By serving this summer, we hope our young scholars and their families will make an ongoing commitment to volunteering throughout the year,” says Mary Elizabeth Bruce, Founding Director of Major Initiatives for Summer Advantage USA.
  • Posted on Aug 7, 2009
    The YMCA Earth Service Corps joined forces with the Washington Trails Association to get dirty at Mount Saint Helens for a week of environmental restoration.

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