Celebrating People in Action

It’s all about volunteers this National Volunteer Week, April 15-21.

There are many volunteer opportunities at the Chisago County Senior Center in North Branch where many already share their time and talents.

Things that are needed are help with set up for special events, help or  be an instructor with different classes, fold newsletter, bake goodies when needed, hang flyers, sit in on board meetings or take a position on the board, help with fundraising, or serve lunch at doings.  In addition in the dining room help is needed to set tables, pour beverages, help pack Meals on Wheels, help clean up, put dishes away.

Volunteers in the schools

Kelly Gunderson, a kindergarten teacher at Jacobson Elementary School noted that Grandma Ruby, Christina Towle, and Cindy Schlangen are volunteers in her classroom. And kindergarten teacher Maureen Sybrant said her volunteers are Bob and Ruby Erickson, Jim Schoolmeesters, Diane Buehring, Gabi Stepp and Viv Pasche.

At Sunrise River Elementary in North Branch, Principal Jason Hartmann reports there are 240 volunteers who support the students by assisting the teachers and students. “They do everything from read with students to stuff Friday folders,” he said.

Alissa Zeltinger at Jacobson Elementary notes that Shelly Bjork volunteers every Tuesday and Thursday in the 3rd grade.  “She is here for about an hour and a half and does reading probes with our students and also pulls out students to work on their math facts.”

How it began

Established in 1974, National Volunteer Week has grown in scope each year since, drawing the support and endorsement of all subsequent U.S. presidents, governors, mayors and other respected elected officials.

National Volunteer Week is about inspiring, recognizing and encouraging people to seek out imaginative ways to engage in their communities. It’s about demonstrating to the nation that by working together, in unison, we have the fortitude to meet our challenges and accomplish our goals.

National Volunteer Week is about taking action, encouraging individuals and their respective communities to be at the center of social change—discovering and actively demonstrating their collective power to foster positive transformation.

National Volunteer Week is not only a moment in time to celebrate volunteers, but to enable a nation to share ideas, practices, and stories, wherever they happen, and shaping a movement to re-imagine the notion of citizenship for the 21st century.

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