The Volunteer Center of Cedar Valley

The role of the Volunteer Center of Cedar Valley is to bring people and community needs together through a range of programs and services. Our position in the community is centered on the ability to:

·         Connect people with opportunities to serve

·         Build the capacity for effective local volunteering

·         Promote Volunteering

·         Participate in strategic initiatives that mobilize volunteers to meet local community needs

Through the VCCV’s mission of promoting and supporting effective volunteerism; to serve as the resource and coordination center for volunteers and a catalyst in building coalitions and community partnerships, we are able to connect thousands of volunteers with opportunities to serve. During 2010, the VCCV connected over 6,000 people with 70+ organizations throughout the Cedar Valley.

 

You can visit our website to research the many organizations and opportunities and sign-up to participate.

So you may ask yourself… why should I volunteer? Through volunteerism, you have the power to positively impact your community! Have you ever thought about volunteering your time to a community organization? There are many different reasons for you to start volunteering:

·         To explore a career

·         To improve your communication skills

·         To gain work experience for your resume

·         To enhance personal development and growth

·         To develop new friendships and meet interesting people

·         To learn how to bring about community change

·         To use individual creativity and explore new ideas and concepts

·         To develop leadership sills, gain confidence, and self-esteem

·         To learn skills in problem solving

·         To fulfill need to achieve

·         To increase chances for scholarships

·         To help others

·         To practice something you're good at, such as music or computers

The "DO's" of Great Volunteering

·         Do be flexible. Open-mindedness will help you enjoy your experience even more.

·         Do be persistent. If you are not contacted by your volunteer coordinator or agency right away, it doesn't mean they aren't interested. Why not call them?

·         Do be responsible. Show up on time and follow through with commitments. Your work ethic now will be your work ethic later in life.

·         Do take initiative. You can even start your own volunteer program and do it on your own time.

·         Do expect to get plenty of satisfaction and fun from your volunteer experiences.

As a UNI student, you have plenty of ways to get involved with your community. The most reliable way to get involved in the Cedar Valley is by contacting the Volunteer Center of Cedar Valley. The VCCV can help any student find the perfect opportunity that fits their interests and their schedule.

Being a college student is often very busy and stressful. Many students may think that if they offer to volunteer they will be committing to a business or organization; however, the VCCV is set up so that each student can choose when to volunteer, how long they would like to commit to the organization and where they would like to contribute their time. Volunteering can also be beneficial to a student; by volunteering the student can take their mind off of school and focus on helping others. Volunteering will relieve some of the stress the student may be feeling about exams or projects coming up.

Volunteering does not have to be an experience that you do not enjoy or one that you don’t want to complete; however, when a student is thinking about where to volunteer it is important that they follow a few tips in order to have the most enjoyable experience:    

·         Choose an opportunity that interests you and that involves using your strengths or volunteer at a business or organization that relates to your major and goal that you have for your future career. There are plenty of organizations that are looking for help with animals, kids or senior citizens and if those don’t interest you there are also other opportunities to help the community all together or different businesses.

·         Another way to make volunteering an enjoyable experience is by volunteering with friends or an organization.

·         While volunteering it is important to always be open-minded and open to trying new and different activities.

Become a volunteer in the Cedar Valley today and help someone in need!

Volunteer Center of Cedar Valley’s on-campus office is located at Maucker Union every Thursday during the academic year from 9:00 - 3:00. Contact Lauren Finke, Executive Director, at volunteerUNI@vccv.org or call (319) 272-2087 with questions.