April is National Volunteer Month and there are plenty of ways that you can get out and give back. After coming across a list of NYC spring volunteer opportunities, I decided to create one for Chicago. Ideally, I thought about doing one for all of springtime, but I think that a monthly guide is easier to digest!
I present to you four opportunities that caught my eye. Check them out below!
The Glass Slipper Project
Prom season is right around the corner and The Glass Slipper Project wants to make sure that girls in the Chicagoland area have gorgeous gowns to wear on their big night. Volunteers are needed to help the girls as they “shop” for their dress, accessories, and makeup. Also, if you have alteration skills, your help is needed as well!
Dates: Saturday, April 20 and Saturday, April 27
How to sign up: Check out the various volunteer opps here and sign up for whichever one fits your schedule!
How to sign up: Register through the MS Society’s website here.
Healthy Kids Day at the Lakeview YMCA
Each spring, YMCAs across the country take part in YMCA Healthy Kids Day. It’s an opportunity for families to spend fun time together while improving their health. One Brick Chicago is getting a team of volunteers together to set up, help with registration, run games, serve healthy snacks, and more.
Date: Saturday, April 27
How to sign up: Register on the One Brick site here.
Hanging at the Greater Chicago Food Depository
Repacking Sessions with the Greater Chicago Food Depository
The repacking sessions at the Food Depository top my list of favorite service projects. For a few hours, you’ll help GFCD staff break down thousands of pounds of donated food into smaller portions that can be distributed to food banks and partner agencies for families. This Wednesday night session is still open and can be slotted in after work!
Date: Wednesday, 4/17 (6-9pm)
How to sign up: You can RSVP for this session online.
Are there any other cool service opportunities that I should know about? Post in the comments below or tweet them to me using the hashtag #FabVolunteer.
Baseball season is back and I am so ready to root root root for the White Sox! While on the website this morning, I learned about the White Sox Volunteer Corps that consists of fans and players. The team created the Corps in response to Sox Fan-in-Chief President Obama’s call for Americans to better their communities through service. What’s so cool about this is that everyone from the staff to the players link up with folks like me to make a lasting impact within the community. Past projects have supported the Greater Chicago Food Depository and the American Red Cross.
More than 5,400 Sox fans and community-focused Chicagoans have signed up for the Volunteer Corps since its inception and GUESS WHAT? I just signed up and am anxiously awaiting the first project of the season. If you’re a fellow Sox fan looking to make a difference, all you have to do is sign up here.
Just another reason to cheer on Chicago’s BEST baseball team. Does your favorite team have a similar volunteer initiative?
Target has announced that it is teaming up with FEED for a capsule collection that will hit stores on June 30. The collection will include more than 50 stylish products to benefit Feeding America, the nation’s leading domestic hunger-relief charity. The ultimate goal? Provide 10 million 10 million meals to Americans in need.
Co-designed by FEED Founder Lauren Bush Lauren, each piece ranges in price from $3 to $400, and will display the number of meals donated to Feeding America as a result of the purchase.
Want to learn more about the collection and even get a sneak peek? Check out the video below.
None of us can move forward if half of us are held back.
Today, it was announced that Beyoncé, Salma Hayek, and Gucci Creative Director Frida Giannini have joined forces to launch a major women’s empowerment campaign, Chime for Change. Chime for Change will “provoke, collect, and share powerful stories of girls and women globally,” while using social media to funnel donations to a range of women’s education and equality charities.
The campaign will focus on three areas: education, health, and justice for women and girls worldwide. If you’re wondering why Gucci is involved, you should know that the company actually has a long history of engagement with girls’ and women’s issues, including a seven-year relationship with UNICEF in support of girls’ education.
Without getting into too many details, there’s been a barrage of recent media coverage highlighting the need for a campaign of this magnitude. How major are we talking? Well, they’ve partnered with NGOs like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and their Advisory Board consists of advocates and leaders like Arianna Huffington, Meryl Streep, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Yasmeen Hassan.
I’m incredibly excited to see what comes out of this initiative. The website nods to a major announcement happening in mid-March. Can’t wait to find out the details.
Today’s post is actually more like a confession. You see, last year, I signed up to run the Run 10 Feed 10 challenge in Cincinnati in October. I was rocking and rolling on during my training for like 3 weeks, and then… BOOM. I fell off. Big time. So much so, that I *gulp* skipped the race.
I know, I know, I know… You see. I figured that if no one asked me about it, then it didn’t matter. Especially since I’d already paid the registration fee, which helped provide 10 meals. But, deep down, I know better. So, I am getting my act together and keeping my promise to run 10 kilometers to fight hunger.
To make it count, I am doing the following:
Using Charity Miles to not only help me keep track of my training miles, but to also raise funds for Feeding America. For every mile that I run, $0.25 is donated to the cause. If you’re looking for an incredible way to support a cause, this is a great one that will keep your body moving.
Winter has finally decided to descend upon us in Chicago and I’m finally in the mood to go ice skating. So, when I found out that the Peninsula Chicago opened an outdoor ice skating rink atop their hotel, I was GEEKED. Now, before you think that I just have a weak spot for making posh figure eights, allow me to point out that 100% of the admission + skate rental costs are donated to the Hephzibah Children’s Association and the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital.
The rink is only open to hotel, spa, or restaurant guests so it looks like I’ll be having dinner at The Lobby pretty soon (aka before March). Stay tuned for photos of my wintry excursion.
For more information on the rink, you check out the release here.
As I move through this Fabulous Giver lifestyle, I am constantly motivated by friends of mine who are doing selfless things for others, both near and far. Today, I wanted to spotlight two current projects being spearheaded by two of my friends.
My broseph, George, has one of the biggest hearts that I know. So, I wasn’t surprised when he announced his goal to collect socks and warm blankets to help get 213 people through this bone-chilling Chicago winter. The initiative, Cover Chicago, has also inspired similar efforts in Atlanta and Sacramento. Kindness is definitely contagious! For details on drop-off locations in Chicago, check out the flyer below. You can also keep up with the efforts on the blog.
Madie’s $10,000 Birthday Wish
Birthdays are a time of celebration, reflection, and wish-making. My soul sister, Madie (one of the fab ladies behind Divas, MPH), has made one BIG wish for her 30th birthday. And, that is to raise $10,000 to build a well in Ethopia. When she accomplishes her goal, the well will provide clean water for 500 people. Hopefully, I don’t have to tell you what a big deal that is. Madie has already raised over $3,000 dollars for the cause and has less than 70 days to raise the rest. Learn more about her wish and make a donation on her MyCharityWater.org page!
So, these are two of the people who inspire me. Do you have any do-gooder friends? Tell me about them!