Volunteer opportunities for Sept. 16

September 16, 2012 

RETIRED & SENIOR VOLUNTEER PROGRAM (RSVP) places volunteers older than 55 in a variety of positions throughout Thurston, Mason and Lewis counties. Current opportunities include: Be a reading buddy with the Olympia School District; volunteer to host monthly wine and cheese tasting event; hands-on activity with Sand in the City’s Grandparent’s Day; volunteer at an office of learning based organization; help provide information to people in need; volunteer on a farm crew at Left Food Organics; volunteer at the new Yelm Habitat for Humanity ReStore; read to children at child care centers; volunteer for a receptionist position at Senior Services for South Sound; help teach the public about the value of waste management at Olympia Farmers Market. Assignments can be short projects or on-going. Contact Jennifer Thompson, volunteer coordinator, 360-943-2773, ext. 21, or go to unitedway-thurston.org, and select RSVP.


Olympia police harbor patrol is looking for volunteers who can offer at least one day per month to promoting safe boating in South Puget Sound. Priorities are search and rescue, assistance to boaters in need, boater safety education and boating law enforcement. Training and uniforms are provided. All applicants must be 21 and pass a thorough background check, including fingerprinting. Call Amy Stull, 360-753-8049, for application and information.

Be a voice for vulnerable adults If you have a few hours a week to spare, a genuine care and concern for vulnerable adults and dependable transportation, the Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program has a volunteer opportunity to suit you. Put your problem-solving skills to work through this program. Trained volunteer ombudsmen listen to the concerns and questions of citizens living in nursing homes, assisted living facilities or adult family homes, working to resolve their problems or answer questions. Volunteers receive 4 and a half days of free training to become certified, and volunteer a minimum of four hours per week. The next training will be in October. To learn more, and to receive an information packet, call Paul Tosch, 360-943-6018.

Thurston County seeks citizen volunteers: Thurston County is looking for volunteers to serve on advisory boards, committees, and commissions. These groups meet on a regular basis and make recommendations on important issues to the Board of County Commissioners. Call Danielle Westbrook, 360-786-5414, for additional information.

Thurston County Sheriff’s Office is seeking volunteers to assist the Sheriff’s Office by providing and increasing community services that would normally require a commissioned officer. Some opportunities include vacation house checks, business checks, handicap parking violations, Iris Scan, traffic control at special events, speaking engagements, multi-housing/block watch, and other duties as assigned. Each volunteer must complete the two-week volunteer academy, a field training program, and probation status. Applicants must be 18 years old, have the ability to volunteer for four hours per week, have a valid Washington driver’s license, no criminal history, and a certificate of good health from their doctor. To apply, contact Lt. John Price, and fill out a volunteer application returning it with proper picture ID to the Sheriff’s Office, at 2000 Lakeridge Drive SW, Olympia. Call 360-786-5657, or email: pricej@co.thurston.wa.us, for additional information.

Olympia farmers market needs volunteers to help the public with recycling and composting at its waste centers. No handling or lifting is expected. Individuals, groups and organizations are welcome. Training is provided. Volunteers are needed anytime between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Thursday-Sunday. Call Spencer Orman, 360-753-8752, or email: sorman@ci.olympia.wa.us, for additional information. Learn more at: olympiawa.gov/employment-and-volunteering.aspx.

Tumwater Farmers Market needs volunteers to help organize and promote events as well as serve on the planning board. The Tumwater Farmers Market operates midday every Wednesday through October. Call 360-464-5879, to help out.

Sound Learning, located in Shelton, is dedicated to providing alternatives education opportunities for adults in both basic skills (reading, writing, math and GED prep) and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL). We have many opportunities to get involved, including as an adult education tutor, a children’s program volunteer, or a general volunteer to help with special projects, and/or office administration. Call 360-426-9733, or log on to: soundlearning.co for an application.

The YWCA of Olympia needs volunteers to fill the following openings: day center hostess, serving homeless women for two-hour shifts during the winter months; office volunteers for four-hour shifts; and volunteers to stock the shelves of the Other Bank on Tuesdays. In addition, the YWCA always accepts donations of hygiene items such as shampoo and dish soap. Call Bree Lafreniere at 360-352-0593 to volunteer or donate.

GIRL SCOUTS OF WESTERN WASHINGTON We have many girls in Thurston County interested in Girl Scouts and we need adult volunteers. We are looking for adults to work with Brownie Girl Scouts in grades 2-3. Other age levels also are available. Call 253-798-5015, or log on to the website and complete a Volunteer Application: GirlScoutsWW.org Click “Volunteer” then “Apply Today.”

AARP tax-aide program needs volunteer tax counselors to provide free income tax assistance and counseling to low- and middle-income taxpayers, particularly those age 60 and older. Volunteers will be trained during December and January. Computer skills are required. Volunteers of all ages and backgrounds are welcome. Counselors are expected to work a minimum of four hours per week. The program also is recruiting technical people who have a computer hardware or software background as well as front desk staff. To register, call 888-687-2277 or go to aarp.org/taxaide.

Boots to shoes foundation is a nonprofit organization founded by two Washington businessmen to show their appreciation to military service members. Volunteer mentors attend a free mentoring workshop, then are paired with a veteran who they meet with twice a month. Mentors provide insight into the civilian workforce and discuss career goals and job search strategies. Go to bootstoshoes.org.

The Center for natural lands management needs volunteers for Tuesdays and the second Saturday of each month to gather at a South Sound prairie preserve to do critical environmental restoration work. Activities range from burning brush piles and planting native wildflowers and grasses, to native plant seed collection and cleaning. Call 360-570-0762 or email ssvolunteers@cnlm.org to volunteer.

Friends of Paul Grudis needs volunteers to purchase and deliver nutritious snacks for the homework club at Evergreen Vista. Also needed are donations of housewares, bedding, towels and kitchen wares. Several volunteers are needed each month. Call Lindsay at 360-352-1315.

Dispute Resolution Center needs volunteers to help people resolve their conflicts with friends, neighbors, families, co-workers, landlords or businesses. Learn how to be a neutral listener for four hours per week. Call 360-956-1155.

Kokua needs volunteers to “Be a Buddy” to an adult with disabilities. Volunteers are partnered with an individual with similar interests to go on outings or visit in the client’s home. Must be age 18 or older and pass a background check. Contact Randi Miller at 360-705-4665, ext. 120.

THE CRISIS CLINIC OF THURSTON AND MASON COUNTIES needs volunteers for its crisis line and youth help line. Volunteers, after receiving 60 hours of training, offer free, anonymous, confidential, and nonjudgmental crisis intervention over the phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week. For details about the training call Keylee at 360-586-2888 ext. 103, or go to: crisis-clinic.org. The Crisis Clinic also needs volunteers for its working board.

The North Olympia Fire Department needs volunteers to create websites, maintain vehicles, promote life safety education or work with teen fire cadets. Contact Lt. Derek Hall at 360-705-0234 or hall@northolympiafire.com.

Friend to Friend needs volunteers to visit with residents in nursing, assisted-living and retirement homes throughout Thurston County. Call 888-383-7818.

Rosie’s Place which serves homeless and high-risk youth and their families, has a variety of volunteer opportunities. Contact Susan Alexander at salexander@ communityyouthservices.org or 360-943-0780, ext. 116.

City of Olympia Safe & Sober Driving needs volunteers who have been injured or have had a loved one injured or killed by a drunken driver to share their stories with the DUI Victim Impact Panel. Call 360-753-8284.

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