Volunteer opportunities, provided by Volunteer! United (formerly Volunteer! Baton Rouge), are outlined in this column every Sunday. To learn more about these opportunities, contact the listed agency directly.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED, the Recreation and Park Commission for East Baton Rouge Parish (BREC) - Erin O'Neill, (225) 272-9200, ext. 143, or email@example.com: BREC is looking for volunteers for its Hearts and Hooves Therapeutic Riding Program at the Farr Park Equestrian Center. Help is needed for the entire six-week session, for either one or both classes. Each rider needs one horse leader and two side walkers to ensure rider safety. The volunteer will also help prepare the horses for class. Sessions start Sept. 10. Volunteers must be 16 or older and horse experience is appreciated, but not required. A volunteer training day will be offered before Hearts and Hooves starts this fall. For more information, contact O'Neill.
WANT TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN THE LIVES OF OTHERS? Hospice Compassus - Melissa Cothern, (225) 768-0866 or Melissa.Cothern@hospicecom.com: Hospice Compassus is seeking volunteers for activities hosted in numerous nursing homes and assisted living facilities in Baton Rouge and the surrounding areas. Activities may include such things as bingo, crafts, manicures, birthday parties, scrapbooking, etc. This is an opportunity for students to get service hours. Volunteers are required to have a background check, provide their own transportation, and go through a free orientation process. Contact Cothern for more information.
CORN MAZE VOLUNTEERS, Burden Horticulture Society - Simone Kramer, (225) 235-8896 or firstname.lastname@example.org: Volunteers are needed to help with a corn maze, pumpkin painting, hayride, straw mountain and balloon launch at the Corn Maze at Burden Center. The event will be held Sept. 22-23. Contact Kramer.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED, Junior Achievement - Paula Bradley, (225) 928-7008 or email@example.com: Volunteers are needed for JA Finance Park, a program that helps middle school students understand personal financial decision-making through an experiential, real-life simulation. Students visit Finance Park and are assigned a life scenario, including a job, salary and family situation. They learn how to construct and adhere to a personal budget. Volunteers will guide students through the process by spending the day at Finance Park from 8 a.m. until approximately 1:30 p.m. This event will be held Sept. 26 through Nov. 2. Contact Bradley for more information.
HELP FAMILIES AFTER LOCAL DISASTERS, American Red Cross - Barbara Bourgeois, (225) 456-5555 or firstname.lastname@example.org: Be part of the team that provides the initial response to local disasters, particularly house fires, ensuring that those affected have basic necessities such as food, shelter and clothing. Serve the community or the region. Become immediately active after a brief orientation, then receive hands-on training during response and classroom training during the first year of service. To learn more, contact Bourgeois.
CRISIS COUNSELORS, Baton Rouge Crisis Intervention Center - Allyson Pardue, (225) 924-1431 or email@example.com: Do you want to help others by listening? The Baton Rouge Crisis Intervention Center is looking for volunteer crisis counselors for THE PHONE crisis telephone line and Crisis Chat, an online instant messaging service. The deadline for joining the upcoming training class is Thursday. Main qualifications are the ability to be empathetic and nonjudgmental, and a willingness to learn. The training is approximately 60 hours. Once training is complete, there is a volunteer commitment of 12 hours per month for at least six months. Interested individuals can contact Pardue for more information. The application packet and training schedule can be downloaded by visiting the website at http://www.brcic.org.
VOLUNTEERS NEEDED, LA. BRIDES AGAINST BREAST CANCER - Joe Marra, (877) 721-4673 or firstname.lastname@example.org: The Brides Against Breast Cancer Nationwide Tour of Gowns is returning to Baton Rouge on Sept. 15 and 16 and needs help. Volunteers are needed to assist with brides finding their dream gown, registration, greeter, set up and breakdown. Shifts start 30 minutes prior to the show opening, durations and 30 minutes after the show. Sign up by visiting the website, http://babcbatonrougelavolunteer2012.eventbrite.com/, or contacting Marra for more information.