Where to help right now
Posted on 22 Jun 2009 by Crystal Dempsey
Local non-profits face huge challenges. Budgets soon will be slashed — some by half, others by a third — because of the recession and due to controversy around the United Way’s leadership. Some agencies will close their doors.
CLT Blog has joined Charlotte Mission Possible, a media alliance that will spotlight community needs.
Besides money, several groups need volunteers to help cope with the growing numbers of those in need.
An acquaintance who was recently laid off asked where he could go to help right now. He doesn’t have money but he has time. Here is the list that I gave him:
1. Hands on Charlotte: Call it Volunteer HQ — this group provides a directory of opportunities and ongoing service projects.
2. Crisis Assistance Ministries: This agency offers financial assistance for those facing evictions or loss of utilities. They also provide clothing and household goods. They’re always looking for volunteers or advocates.
3. Second Harvest Food Bank: They always need help with sorting the food donations. An hour of your time saves the agency around $20 an hour in labor costs. Also, try to take a bag or two of food (peanut butter is an excellent choice).
4. Habitat for Humanity: While shopping at the Habitat ReStore is all well and good, you don’t get the full Habitat experience unless you help build a house. And if you can, shake hands with the family who will be living there.
5. Urban Ministries: This center sees anyone who needs help as their neighbor. Services range from a soup kitchen to counseling to gardening. Don’t miss opportunities to help with the CommunityWorks 945 programming.