Summer is here! Perhaps you have a more open schedule or looking for some new activities, please consider some of these great service opportunities for you and/or your family.
Katy Christian Ministries (KCM):
- Food donations are low during the summer months – consider donating food to the KCM Food Pantry. Check the website for needed items. http://ktcm.org/food-pantry/ and check out service opportunities as an individual, family or group.
- Pick up food donations from local grocery stores and deliver to KCM a couple of times a week. http://ktcm.org/volunteer/ or https://www.justserve.org/projects/18ad2169-8d17-4f52-8d5e-3fc566d7cf05
- Make Handmade cards are always welcome. A cheerful message, religious phrase or Bible scripture on the cards helps to give encouragement to others. Cards may be dropped at the Food Pantry.
- Plastic grocery bags – Clean grocery bags (without holes) are needed at KCM. Flatten your grocery bags and drop them at KCM. 5510 1st Street, Katy, TX Hours: M-F 9am –5 pm, Sat 9am – 1PM
- Red Apple School Supply Drive –assist with the Red Apple School Supplies needed by children in our area for this coming year. http://ktcm.org/red-apple/
- Thrift shop. Donations of gently used clothing (clean and in good repair), housewares and furniture are always accepted. These should be delivered to the rear entrance. Check their website for information on pickup of large furniture at your home. http://ktcm.org/donate/wherewhat-can-i-donate/
- Volunteer at KCM – there are many needs that are waiting for you. http://ktcm.org/volunteer/ scroll down for more opportunities
- More opportunities – Don’t see what you would like to help with? Contact KCM directly and ask for other opportunities. Volunteer Coordinator- Kristina 281-391-5262 Ext: 4009 Albright@ktcm.org
The Holiday Project:
- Handmade Cards : Contact Janet Lunt (K2 Ward) Dandj7c@gmail.com or 832-379-9624 to sign up to make holiday cards that are distributed throughout the year by The Holiday Project as volunteers visit those in care centers in the Katy area. Share your love, a smile and conversation with those needing a little bit of extra love.
Care Centers/Assisted Living Centers – Katy/Brookshire/Sealy area:
- Visit residents at Grace Care Center – Katy. Spend a few minutes to brighten the lives of others by sharing your smile, love and talents. Does a member of your ward reside in a care center and need your love? There are many care/assisted living centers in the area. Most care centers appreciate having people come and spend some time with the residents.
Texas Children’s Hospital Katy(TCH): All items may be dropped at the front desk.
- Assemble Activity Bags: These bags are used to help a child waiting for a doctor’s appointment, surgery, medical procedure or just needing a little extra love. Small sized paper bags are best. (you may provide artwork on a bag but it is not required.) They are unable to use bags with religious phrases or “Get well soon”. ‘Hope you are feeling better’ is appropriate ). A few sheets of the following are always enjoyed. Coloring sheets, word search pages, hangman, tic-tac-toe, connect the dot, dot-to-dot, etc. may be copied off the internet or from books. A small type toy/activity may be added but not necessary. These may include a small container of playdoh, card game, small puzzles, etc. Patients from 2 – 3 years to older teen enjoy these bags.
- Decorate Placemats for Food Trays: Decorate 11X17 sheets of paper to become colorful, encouraging placemats for food trays help brighten TCH patient’s day. Encouraging thoughts, pictures or small activities (tic-tac-toe, connect the dots, etc) patients can enjoy will be helpful.
- Message guidelines: TCH is unable to use placemats with phrases saying ‘Get better soon’ or similar. Phrases such as ‘Hope you are feeling better’ or ‘Have a happy day’, etc. are appropriate. Patients come from many cultures so they ask that religious phrases/thoughts are not
- Decoration guidelines: Keep in mind food plates are placed on the placemats so multi-dimensional placemats or raised embellishments would be best used another way. These are disposable – No need to laminate. No glitter please. Be creative, colorful and have fun!
- Donate Fleece Blankets: construct fleece lap blankets of all sizes are always needed. Any child loves to have a soft blanket to cuddle.
- Donate New Underwear. New underwear is always needed. Currently there is a need for older children and teens but all sizes are welcome.
AngelGowns by Diane:
- Angel Gowns by Diane provides burial clothing for families who have suffered the loss of a child before, during or shortly after birth at no cost. This is an opportunity to either donate formal dresswear (wedding dresses, bridesmaid dresses and other formal wear), help in cutting out simple burial clothing or use your sewing skills to make burial clothing. Contact Diane Dionne at http://angelgownsbydiane.org/
Books Between Kids:
- Books Between Kids is a non-profit organization serving Houston’s at-risk children by providing them with books to build their own home libraries. Volunteer or donate gently used children’s books to help children in HISD build a home library. http://www.booksbetweenkids.org/
About 85% of Houston ISD’s elementary-aged children live at or below the poverty line. Priorities for these children and their families are food, clothing and shelter – all other items fall into the category of “want”. Research has shown that children growing up in homes without books, where books are considered a luxury, are less likely to complete a basic education than their peers who do have books available at home (University of Nevada, 2010). Books Between Kids strives to change this scenario by collecting gently used books and distributing them to children in need.
- Often has short term service opportunities for individuals. These are hard to share as they come up very quickly. Sign up with them directly for these opportunities.
Case for Smiles
- This is one of the few volunteer organizations solely dedicated to helping sick children cope with the stress of their illnesses and injuries. They provide handmade whimsical pillowcases for each child and distribute them in Katy area hospitals. Check out our website http://caseforsmiles.org/ Contact Theresa in the Katy area for information on fabric/directions on how to make these pillowcases. TheresaForSmiles@comcast.net
Handmade blankets: Consider making/donating handmade blankets to those in need.
- Texas Children’s Hospital – Katy
- Grace Care Center Katy
- Assisted Living Centers in the Katy/ Brookshire/Sealy Area
- Is there a ward member in your ward who would love a blanket/visit to feel of the love you have
- Project Linus http://www.projectlinus.org/ HoustonArea – Contact: Sally B (281) 492-2679
Share the gift of Sight:
- Recycle eyeglasses you no longer need. The Lion’s Club drop-off box for gently used glasses is located in the front entry area at Maude Marks Library at 1815 Westgreen.
- Bless those living in Uganda by helping to make the upper parts of shoes for the people in Uganda. The pattern is traced and then cut from old denim jeans, sent to an individual in the US to send on to Uganda where they employ people in their country to make the shoes. These shoes cover the feet of people in Uganda to help protect them from ‘jiggers’ that burrow into the skin and make it painful and difficult to walk. We are so blessed!!!! http://solehopeparty.org/ or check with Grand Lakes YM/YW. Word has it that a Soul Hope Shoe Party was a great YM/YW activity.
Interfaith Ministries (IM) of Greater Houston:
Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston’s Refugee Services department, in conjunction with the U.S. State Department, Episcopal Migration Ministries and Church World Service, resettles legal refugees fleeing their homeland in fear of political, social or religious persecution. IM helps refugees from around the world make new lives in America. https://www.imgh.org/
- Donations: There is always a need for household and other items that are given to the refugees when they arrive. Donations are accepted to help with those relocating. Be sure to check the website on ways you can help and dates/times to drop off donations. https://www.imgh.org/refugee-services/refugee-services-wish-list
- Flash cards: Most of our refugees do not know English. Flash cards can be made and given to the families to learn basic English words that can help them get around the Houston area. Adult cards are in greater need however, elementary age children cards are also appreciated.
- Cut out and paste a picture on one side of the index card – these can be very basic items (oranges, bread, shirt, pants, dress, etc – think simple picture of one item)
- Flip the card over and write out the word of the picture.
- Use rubber bands to collect sets of 25 completed refugee cards and package in a sandwich bag.
- Note on the bag Adult or Child so they know which age group the cards would assist the best.
Refugee flash cards may be delivered/sent to Interfaith Ministries 3202 San Jacinto St. Houston, TX 77004
- Handmade cards: Holiday or Sympathy cards can be made to brighten the lives of Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston clients such as recipients of Meals on Wheels. There is no need to place cards in an envelope, many clients have difficulty getting the cards out of the envelopes due to arthritis and stiff joints.
- The following holidays are observed: Valentine’s Day, Memorial Day, July 4, Veterans Day, Christmas (generic holidays card around Christmas time). Please no glitter on the cards. Card sentiments should be sensitive to different religions: ‘keeping you in our prayers’ is ok. ‘stay strong, Jesus will guide you’ is not ok. Generic greetings like ‘happy memorial day’ is great. Holiday cards are needed about 3 weeks prior to the holiday as they do not have room to store them for prolonged periods of time.
- Sympathy cards are always welcome. Sentiments should be sensitive to all religions. Suggested thoughts are:
- With our deepest heartfelt sympathy at the loss of your loved one….
- Our thoughts and prayers are with you in this painful season of your life…
- In prayer for the healing of your heart in a very profound way…
Handmade cards may be delivered/sent to Interfaith Ministries Meals on Wheels 3202 San Jacinto St. Houston, TX 77004
Other opportunities to volunteer at Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston may be found on their website https://www.imgh.org/ under Meals on Wheels, Refugee Services, or Volunteer. Many things can be done from our area. Meals on Wheels is available in the Katy area for volunteers.
Summer Volunteers or YM/YW Project Ideas:
KATY PARKS – KEEP KATY BEAUTIFUL
Check out the website for volunteer opportunities http://cityofkaty.com/our-community/keep_katy_beautiful/
TEXAS WILDLIFE REHABILITATION COALITION
TWRC is looking for volunteers to work their Center volunteer shifts which include the care and feeding of their Animal Ambassadors and general cleaning and maintenance tasks for the Center. The students would need to attend a center orientation, become a member and then they would receive a link to their Volunteer Spot online sign-up sheet. They then can sign up for any open positions and come in for four hour shifts helping take care of their adorable Animal Ambassadors and helping with the tasks involved with keeping the Center running. Contact Victoria Hepburn at TWRC for additional information at email@example.com.
Check out the listings on JustServe.org
Baby Bird Program https://www.justserve.org/projects/d34a6b51-e55d-465e-980d-1d19f386bcdf
Possum and Pals Program https://www.justserve.org/projects/1144b401-3e84-4998-9987-67e17b7ca553 Center Volunteer https://www.justserve.org/projects/cf64b870-3bd3-4728-b9b9-7055cdac3032
Organizations that may have an opportunity for Eagle/Laurel projects:
Brookwood Community in Brookshire, TX. Contact Brookwood Community directly to see what is needed as you are planning an Eagle/Laurel project.
Katy Christian Ministries
~ Food drive summer- early fall. Donations are needed to help feed others in our community. Contact the Food Pantry Manager to make arrangements / understand their needs prior to organizing a food drive.
~ Building shelves for Pantry or Thrift Store
Contact Katy Christian Ministries for other projects needed at the time you are identifying a project.
For information call Social Services at 281-391-9623.
Katy Prairie Conservancy
Help maintain KPC’s Coastal Prairie Native Seed Nursery, combat invasive species, mulch trails, clear fences of vegetation, and restore prairie habitats. Contact Christine Mansfield 713-523-6135 firstname.lastname@example.org
Books Between Kids – Books Between Kids is a non-profit organization serving Houston’s at-risk children by providing them with books to build their own home libraries. Volunteer or donate gently used children’s books to help children in HISD build a home library. http://www.booksbetweenkids.org/ Plan a book drive for used children’s books
Helpful information –
Where can I recycle paint and other hazardous material I cannot put in my garbage?
Harris County Residential Hazardous Waste – dispose of hazardous waste from your home and garage for the safety of your family and others. http://eng.hctx.net/watershed/hhw_facility.html
Fort Bend County Residential Hazardous Waste – dispose of hazardous waste from your home and garage for the safety of your family and others. http://www.fortbendcountytx.gov/index.aspx?page=360