With flyers describing the newest clubs and organizations on campus that are handed out in Tate filling my backpack, I am aware that students at the University of Georgia have many options to get involved on campus. However, not many students know that there are many other ways to give back to the Athens’ community and volunteer at local organizations.
Different organizations in the Athens-Clarke County area provide a wide variety of volunteer activities for anyone interested in serving the community. Each of these organizations has something for any student, ranging from animal lovers to those who are interested in the environment and those who want to help with domestic violence victims.
- Athens Area Humane Society
The Humane Society is a no-kill shelter that tries “to rescue from animal control” and “educate public on pet ownership,” said shelter manager Jed Kaylor. The organization offers five different types of opportunities for volunteers, ranging from playing with the animals to foster care. They are open seven days a week. Each volunteer shift is an hour long, however, volunteers can sign up for multiple shifts in a row if they wish to stay at the shelter longer. To volunteer with the shelter, students can visit their website at: http://www.athenshumanesociety.org.
- Project Safe, Inc.
Project Safe, Inc. is an organization that helps women in danger due to domestic violence. It gives women a safe place to stay in their shelter and provides a thrift store for the women and local Athens community to purchase items. Project Safe has plenty of opportunities for students to volunteer, including working the thrift store, providing childcare and mentoring/tutoring. To become a volunteer at Project Safe, Inc., volunteers must complete a criminal background check and take a course regarding domestic violence training. If you are interested in volunteering, then check out their website at: http://www.project-safe.org/ways-to-donate/volunteer/ and email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
- Keep Athens Clarke County Beautiful
Keep Athens Beautiful is a nonprofit organization that offers volunteer positions that give students the opportunity to help clean the community. Stacy Smith, the education specialist, said, “We have yearly events where individuals can volunteer- such as MLK Day of Service, Rivers Alive, and some fundraisers like our Yard Sale and Dance Party.” To volunteer with this organization, email Stacy Smith at stacy.Smith@athensclarkecounty.com for more information.
- Help Athens Homeless
The Help Athens Homeless motto, according to the website is “Providing collaborative, comprehensive services to homeless individuals and families working toward sustainable independence.” The organization has a wide variety of volunteer opportunities, which includes providing meals, childcare, and tutoring. If you have a heart for the homeless, check out the website at: http://helpathenshomeless.org in order to sign up for a volunteer slot.
- Athens Clarke County 4-H
According to the website, ACC 4-H provides “‘hands on’ learning experiences” for children ages 9-19. The group focuses on leadership, health and nutrition, agriculture skills, and citizenship. To volunteer for the 4-H Center, you must have a background checks, however, once approved, volunteers can facilitate a variety of youth activities. To learn more about the 4-H program visit: http://www.caes.uga.edu/extension/clarke/4H/index.html, and if you are interested in becoming a volunteer at the 4-H center, email Elizabeth Conway at email@example.com.