Updated Resources from our New Directors
Our 2021-2022 directors Radhia Abdirahman and Mariam Rice would like to share information related to assistance for low-income individuals/families in need of internet service.
As of February 25, 2021, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted on and approved the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program, a $3.2 billion initiative aimed at assisting lower-income households with internet access and digital device acquisition.
Applications are open as of May 12, 2021, so we encourage those who are interested to apply as soon as possible. This opportunity will expire once the Department of Health and Human Services declares an end to the COVID-19 health emergency, or once funds expire.
You can learn more or apply directly by visiting the resource guide at InMyArea.com.
An update from our new directors
Our 2020-2021 directors, Aroog Khaliq and Amanda Nguyen, want to pass on an excellent opportunity for KU students to help continue the struggle against COVID-19.
The state of Kansas is looking for contract tracing volunteers. Learn more about this opportunity keep your community safe here. Registration can be completed here.
We appreciate your dedication, and can’t wait to work with you in the fall! Have a healthy, safe, and relaxing summer, Jayhawks.
Yours in service,
Aroog + Amanda
A letter from our directors
Our 2019-2020 directors, Sam Steuart and Alix Fisk, have prepared a letter that includes important information on how to stay connected with your community and engage in meaningful, virtual service opportunities amid the challenges of COVID-19. Please click here to view the online letter.
Crisis Text Line
If you are experiencing a mental health crisis, one available option is to contact a crisis counselor through the Crisis Text Line. Their services are available for free via Facebook messaging or by texting HOME to 741741.
If you are interested in being trained to serve as a volunteer crisis counselor, please visit this link to learn more about how to receive training and get started anywhere in the United States, Canada, Ireland or the United Kingdom.
How do I continue to volunteer while the university has transitioned to virtual classes?
By the KU Center for Service Learning, with contributions from the CCO.
There are a variety of pathways to service that can be supported virtually in ways that continue to support community needs and learning outcomes. A few ideas based on the pathways to service are:
- Tape, record, or stream performances or workshops to benefit community partner(s)
- Create digital and other social media content, print program materials, or other methods for information-sharing
- Offer (or compile, research, or brainstorm) strategies that provide indirect support from volunteers as a result of coronavirus
- Work with staff to share videos or use technology to continue visits with residents or patients of retirement home facilities
- Develop a social media calendar of posts for an organization
- Conduct virtual or phone-based educational supports for youth and adults
- Provide web-based music/dance/art lessons
- Tutor, mentor, or coach youth online
- Write a positive review for the organization to help with their marketing efforts
- Develop a social marketing and/or media campaign
- Gather and summarize testimonials related to an issue
- Draft legislation to help protect the community
- Lobby on behalf of a community issue
- Develop policy briefs related to an issue
- Conduct background research or gather best practices or other information
- Facilitate an assessment, evaluation, or gather feedback via phone or web-based services
- Conduct a literature review or online research on best practices
- Develop tools for program assessment or analyze data
- Conduct remote interviewing of current/past clients about their experiences, impact of the organization on where they are today
- Create a listing of grant opportunities that may be applicable for the organization
- Create online tools to help citizens report or discuss challenges
- Develop online maps and tools (e.g., create an asset map related to an issue or resource)
- Support an online campaign related to an issue
How do I identify virtual volunteer opportunities?
You should contact local organizations to identify volunteer activities that can be supported virtually. Generally, community organizations have a range of needs that can be supported through indirect service. Some local volunteer opportunities that you can review to identify indirect service activities that can be done remotely are accessible from the following:
- If you live in the Topeka area, please visit the United Way of Greater Topeka’s COVID-19 Volunteer Opportunities Page.
- If you live in the Wichita area, please visit the United Way of the Plain’s COVID-19 Volunteer Opportunities Page.
- If you live in the Kansas City area, please visit the United Way of Greater Kansas City’s COVID-19 Volunteer Opportunities Page.
Additionally, some opportunities to volunteer virtually are supported through these channels:
- How to Get Involved with Virtual Volunteering
- The Coronavirus and the Rise of the Virtual Volunteer
- Virtual Volunteering
- 9 PLACES TO VOLUNTEER ONLINE (AND MAKE A REAL IMPACT)
- United Nations Volunteering
- Translators Without Borders
- National Parks Service
- Taproot Foundation
- Crisis Text Line
- Amnesty Decoders
- Smithsonian Digital Volunteers
What can I do to serve the Lawrence community during this time?
- A team of organizers has put together some Mutual Aid Volunteering opportunities.
- The Lawrence Humane Society is looking to get all of their animals into foster homes.
- The Lawrence Community Shelter is accepting donations to help move residents of the shelter into permanent housing and arraning alternate housing sites for residents showing symptoms of COVID-19.
- The Ballard Center is recruiting volunteers to deliver food/general supply donations to households utilizing Ballard Center resources.
The United Way of Douglas County has put together a general guide for volunteers during this time- before you sign up to volunteer, check that out here!