About five to six times a year at the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank, a group of individuals gathers in its sprawling 85,000-square-foot warehouse to help pack meals for the area's hungry. And they do it all during their free time. This group called CORE was started last year by the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank (ACRFB) and affords its participants a twofold benefit.
The volunteers not only have the reward of giving back to their community by helping to further ACRFB's mission but the opportunity to network with other young professionals as well. CORE was "created to broaden the engagement of young leaders in our community," said Kat Pestian, communications coordinator for ACRFB.
"The foodbank wanted a space for people to see the tangible difference they make by volunteering, and at the same time, connect to other leaders who deeply care about our community."
With volunteering, some are able to give of their time freely and generously throughout a given year. Others cannot. But when they can, they invariably wait for a particular time to feel good about giving back.
That time has arrived.
"The need for volunteers is always there; it never goes away," said Andrea Metzler, director of the United Way volunteer center. "But the need for an individual to want to give back skyrockets during the holiday season."
The holiday season brings wonderful moments shared with family and friends, but it also can bring unnecessary stress, such as what to give to those loved ones.
Instead of waiting in long lines or spending countless hours browsing Amazon's website for that "perfect gift" for your family or friend, try a more unconventional gift giving approach. Scrap the gifts for each other, and give to others.
For example, Goodyear employes adopt familes from Greenlead Family Center. They are clients of from all of the center's departments, said Dina Younis, fund development and marketing coordinator at Greenleaf Family Center. Goodyear delivers the wrapped gifts which are distributed to the families.
Get your craft on at the fourth annual Crafty Mart which will take place Nov. 24 from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. in downtown Akron.
According to the press release, Crafty Mart is a gathering of uncommon crafters & artisans from the Akron area. It's a chance for the public to holiday shop in a comfy setting outside the Big Box and Mall. There will be scores of one-of-a-kind useful yet eye-catching holiday gifts that you won't find elsewhere.
Crafty Mart began four years ago when co-founders Juniper Sage and J Hudson saw a lack of art shopping in the Akron area. Hudson would visit Sage, co-owner of Square Records, at Cleveland art events and wondered why these events weren't happening in their own area. So, they made it happen.
The kickoff for the 2012 United Way/Red Cross Campaign in Summit County will be Wednesday, Sept. 12 at Lock 3 Park in Downtown Akron from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The event will feature a Cornhole (bean bag toss game) tournament, and event organizers are hoping to break a world record for "the greatest number of people playing cornhole in the same competition."
Michael Gaffney, vice president, marketing and communications, said the record is very breakable. "Our research with the Guinness Book of World Records representatives shows they already monitor an existing record in this category, and we're excited about our chances of breaking it. We think people in this community will love the opportunity to be a part of a world record," he added.
Girls living in Akron will have a unique opportunity to help shape the direction of their city, with the launch of the Girltopia program. Joining is easy and FREE.
GIRLtopia: Akron will kick-off on Sept. 15 with 75 Akron girls in grades 6-12 learning persuasive speaking, planning and networking – skills that will prepare them to complete 'Take Action' projects and become the women leaders of tomorrow.
"Girl Scouts have been committed to serving their communities for 100 years," said Girl Scouts of North East Ohio Chief Executive Officer Daisy L. Alford-Smith, Ph.D. "When you enlist help from girls who have a vested interest in the future of the city where they live, they will become engaged and feel empowered to make a difference."
The inaugural Global Village Festival of Greater Akron will be held on Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012, from 11:00 a.m. - 8 p.m. at Lock 3 Park in downtown Akron. Admission is FREE.
This event is a celebration of international and ethnic diversity in our community. This event will highlight the dynamics of the cultural diversity in our modern urban environment, and is designed to enable distinctive cultural expressions – including performances, exhibitions, international cuisine and much more.
Zaina Ennis, a lifetime resident of Akron, has been selected to represent Ohio in the national Ms. Essence Pageant to be held on Saturday, Aug. 4. The program is celebrating its fourth year and has recently relocated from Missouri to Washington, D.C.
Ennis is excited to compete in the pageant and hopes to bring the crown back to Ohio.
Corporate kickball tournament benefits Boys & Girls Clubs
The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Western Reserve will host its 2nd Annual Kicking it for Kids Corporate Kickball Tournament June 9 at Logan Field on Vaughn Rd, just off of Route 224 and South Main Street. The Coca Cola team is back and ready to defend its first ever Kicking it for Kids Champion title! They were tough competition last year. Does your team have what it takes to defend these victors? Sign your team up today and maybe you can be crowned the king of the kickball field!
All proceeds will support the programs of the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Western Reserve. "This event was such a blast last year. This year, it's going to be even bigger and better!" said Tiffany Ruwadi, BGC Connect member and Boys & Girls Club volunteer. Kicking it for Kids is a great opportunity for your organization to receive exposure and help support the Boys & Girls Clubs. There are four sponsorship levels from which companies and organizations can choose. Be assured that your sponsorship fee will be directly used to help kids who need us most!
The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Western Reserve will renovate 3,800 square feet of the Joy Park Community Center into dedicated club space for homework and programs, an art and music room, game room, technology lab, and teen lounge.
The announcement, made by Akron Mayor Donald Plusquellic and teen representatives of current Boys & Girls Club members on Monday, is the result of a lead gift from the LeBron James Family Foundation and a partnership with the City of Akron. The Joy Park Community Center is located at 825 Fuller St. in Akron.