Community Service – Week of Feb. 21

Any opportunity listed on this website can be used to meet the honors college volunteer requirement.

If you’re looking for an off-campus opportunity, Volunteer Kalamazoo is always a wonderful resource.

Flint – Catholic Distribution Center
Robert Wilson, Instructor in the Environmental Studies program, is coordinating a volunteer opportunity for students interested in helping the people of Flint with their drinking water crisis. There is a volunteer opportunity at a Catholic Distribution Center in downtown Flint working in conjunction with the United Way. Interested students should email for questions and specific information.

Project Impact with FOCUS Kalamazoo
Project Impact (PI) is almost here! FOCUS Kalamazoo is a student organization at WMU that connects students to volunteer opportunities within the community. On Saturday, Feb. 27, FOCUS Kalamazoo will be celebrating their 100th volunteer event by having their first Project Impact with 100 volunteers! At the end of the day, all of the PI volunteers will gather at the Lee Honors College for a Community FOCUS Tank (CFT). The CFT will give volunteers the opportunity to share their experience and discuss the social issues that are occurring in Kalamazoo. For more information and to sign up, click here.

Kalamazoo Dream Center
The Kalamazoo Dream Center is a faith-based organization that believes in giving a promise of hope and a practical means for achieving a stable future for individuals and families living below the poverty line or are homeless in the Kalamazoo area. There are many opportunities for students at the Kalamazoo Dream Center, such as working in the thrift store, Dream Design, volunteering as a food coordinator, receptionist, donation pick up, marketing, fundraising and social media. The Kalamazoo Dream Center is located at 1122 Portage Street. Interested students should contact Erika Novar at or by phone at (269) 419-3740.

Habitat for Humanity, Volunteering with Kids and more!
United Campus Ministry is looking for students to volunteer for their various service learning programs, including Habitat for Humanity, Volunteering with Kids, Shantytown and the Chicago Urban Plunge. Habitat for Humanity and Volunteering with Kids are semester long, and Shantytown and the Chicago Urban Plunge will be taking place in April. Volunteers will be doing a variety of activities depending on the program they choose. For more information and descriptions of each opportunity, view this flier.

Disability Services for Students (DSS)
DSS has three positions for student volunteers.

Reading tests – The volunteer and a student, who is registered and taking a test in the DSS office, will be placed together in one of the testing rooms. The volunteer and the student will both have a copy of the exam and the volunteer will read questions and/or multiple choice answers for the student – whatever best suits their needs.

Scribe for tests – The volunteer and student will be together in a testing room. The volunteer will either be typing answers to short answer/essay questions or completing a Scantron for the student. Don’t worry – volunteers do not need to have “good handwriting” to do this!

Transportation – Volunteering for transportation does require a training session. Volunteers will learn how to drive the gator, where the garage is and basic information about the office. This is a service offered to students who have temporary mobility issues such as a broken leg, ankle, etc. Volunteers drive them from class to class, or class to dorm, etc. This service is offered ON CAMPUS only.

If you are interested in any of these positions, please express which area you are interested in and send your availability to Katie Lynne Edson at

CELCIS Global Engagement Opportunities
The Center for English Language and Culture for International Students (CELCIS) seeks volunteers to assist international students by practicing English with them and engaging in cultural and recreational activities. This can be achieved in a variety of ways:

  • Study Table: an event led by a CELCIS faculty member where students can gain homework assistance and talk to other students.
  • Conversation Circles: a small group event guided by a fluent English speaking student worker weekly during the semester where conversations occur about campus life, U.S./Michigan culture and topics of interest to the group.
  • Recreational/Cultural Activities: these activities are held throughout the semester during the daytime, evenings and weekends. These activities vary according to the weather, time of year, student requests and past successful events. (horseback riding, Miller Auditorium events, shopping trips, sporting events, etc).

For more information or to volunteer contact Melissa Ray at

Film Festival
Volunteers are needed to assist with a film festival organized through WMU for the community in March. Tasks include researching films, posting articles to local websites, posting this event on local calendars and spreading posters around the community. This could take 10 to 20 hours from January to March.

The ideal candidate should have some marketing or communication knowledge and/or speak at least one foreign language, as the films are in Arabic, Chinese, Japanese, Spanish, French, Russian, German and Roman/Latin.

For more information or to volunteer contact Marjorie Zippert at

Tutor Time
Tutor Time is a program that works with elementary students from Winchell Elementary School to provide homework and reading help. Tutor Time is located at the Evergreen South Apartment Complex and runs Monday through Thursday from 4-5:15 p.m. There is a need for student volunteers. Volunteers can do as many days as they would like but are asked to commit to a minimum of one day a week. Carpooling is a possibility if you do not have a vehicle. The program is currently getting underway. If you are interested in becoming a part of Tutor Time, email Hayley Weston at with availability or any questions or concerns.

Regional Science Olympiad
The Regional Science Olympiad, held Feb. 27 on the WMU campus, is seeking individual volunteers and groups that are needed to assist in running events and directing students to their events and different buildings. If you are a part of a group that would like to run an event, please email Naomi ( as soon as possible. Individual student volunteers please register here.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this event, please contact Naomi Van Dien at

4th annual Winter Blast Half Marathon, 10k and 5k
Planning is well underway for this event on Sunday, Feb. 28. Additionally, applications for the 2016 Winter Blast Community Spirit Challenge are now available. The Community Spirit Challenge is an excellent way to both participate in a community event while raising money for your organization or a selected charity.

The Community Spirit Challenge is for groups who volunteer to staff one of seven Winter Blast aid & spirit stations. Volunteer groups are eligible for cash prizes which they designate to a local (Kalamazoo and adjacent counties) non-profit 501(c) (3) or 501 (c) (1) organization of their choice. Any business, organization or group is eligible to participate, but must have a minimum of 10 volunteers to staff the aid station and a creative theme, and the recipient of the cash award must be a local non-profit 501(c)(3) or 501 (c) (1) organization. Proceeds will be awarded based on half marathon participant post-race vote.

1st Place – $1,000

2nd Place – $750

3rd Place – $500

4th – 7th Place – $200

Individual and smaller group volunteer opportunities for the Winter Blast Half Marathon, 10k and 5k are available as well. A group of students is needed to assist as parking volunteers and/or course marshals. More than 200 individual volunteers are needed to make the event a success! Individuals can volunteer via the website

Other upcoming Kalamazoo Area Runners events in need of volunteers include the 2016 Kids’ Easter Egg Hunt and Fun Run on March 19 and the 2016 Kal-Haven Trail Run on April 9. We invite you to volunteer for a wide variety of positions. Both group and individual volunteer opportunities are available on the event websites.

Questions can be directed to Joy Mills at

Great Lakes PeaceJam
Great Lakes PeaceJam is an innovative movement that connects youth and Nobel Peace Laureates through service to the community. The 2016 PeaceJam Youth Conference will be held on the WMU campus March 19-20.

There are multiple opportunities for WMU students to connect and engage, primarily as college mentors who will facilitate the conference for the high school PeaceJam participants.

For more information please contact Jeffrey Jones at

Kalamazoo Marathon and Borgess Run for the Health of It!
The Kalamazoo Marathon and Borgess Run for the Health of It! needs around 2,000 volunteers to execute this event. Volunteers help with aid stations, packet pick up, set up, the kids’ run and more.  Both group and individual opportunities are available May 6-9 for the event on May 8.  For more details and to sign up visit: For questions or more information contact Cheryl Pickett at 269-345-1913 or

The following opportunities are available year-round:

Bronco Study Zone (BSZ)
Student Success Services is offering volunteer opportunities for Lee Honors College students interested in tutoring at the Bronco Study Zone in Waldo Library.

Volunteers can offer tutoring help for any course in which they have earned an A or BA (or equivalent transfer credit). Free training on the tutoring process is provided before starting and volunteers are invited to come to one additional training session each month to review tutoring strategies and success activities for students.

If you would like to add tutoring/mentoring experience to your resume, further develop your interpersonal communication skill set, and are interested in helping others succeed academically, contact for more information.

Kalamazoo Drop-In Child Care Center (KDCCC)
The KDCCC is a non-profit organization that offers free, part-time childcare for income eligible families. KDCCC gives parents time to search for employment or housing, keep necessary appointments, go to school, or take a healthy break from the demands of parenting. Volunteers assist the staff in the daily operation of the childcare and are needed to allow KDCCC to operate up to our full capacity. The Kalamazoo Drop-In Child Care Center is located in the basement of the First Congregational Church, UCC at 345 W. Michigan Ave., right on the corner of Park St. and Michigan Ave. Learn more with this flier.

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