What better time of year than the winter holidays to utilize your spare time and resources and give back to the community. Whether you only have time to drop off a scarf at the Meriden Public Library or can flex your fingers to help Gallery 53 wrap donated presents, any bit helps. There are many local organizations that are seeking volunteers and donations this holiday and in case you aren't in the know, Patch has made a list of 10 for you. Happy Holidays!
Meriden Public Library - 105 Miller Street
The Meriden Public Library is a great liaison to various charities. The library sponsors a "storybook tree" which is a collection of new or gently used books that go out to over 30 organizations in town. They also collect donated scarves, hats, and mittens for the Meriden Rotary Club which will be distributed to needy residents. A non-perishable food dropoff box is located in the lobby to benefit the Meriden Food Bank. As for volunteering, the library is always looking for literacy volunteers to help Meriden citizens learn to read. Contact the library for any details at 203-238-2344.
Meriden Humane Society - 311 Murdock Avenue
The Meriden Humane Society is always in need of volunteers to help with their sheltered animals. Options for volunteers include: cleaning, dog walking, cat socializing and helping with fund raising. MHS encourages interested volunteers to call 203-238-3650 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Augusta Curtis Cultural Center - 175 East Main Street
The Augusta Curtis Cultural Center is looking for creative volunteers to perform at various functions and help run programs. Are you a guitar player, singer, able to teach an art class or assist in any creative ways? The ACCC welcomes any suggestions. The center is not staffed and relies solely on volunteers, so if you aren't creatively inclined and would like to help with clerical duties, cleaning or various other tasks, email email@example.com or call at 203-639-2856. The ACCC is a 501C3 non profit agency and volunteers can apply their work for community service hours.
Gallery 53 - 53 Colony Street
Gallery 53 is searching for volunteers for gift wrapping and various clerical duties including writing sales slips. Contact the gallery at firstname.lastname@example.org or 203-235-5347.
United Way of Meriden and Wallingford - 35 Pleasant Street, Suite 1E
The United Way of Meriden and Wallingford is running a program called "Adopt a Family" in which local groups, organizations, families, or individuals can adopt a family in need and help fulfill their holiday wish list. The United Way will match up a family to the donating party and they can purchase books, clothes, art supplies and toys anonymously. Contact the United Way at www.unitedwaymw.org and email@example.com or by calling 203-235-4403.
Midstate Medical Center - 435 Lewis Avenue
Volunteering opportunities are endless at Midstate Medical Center, according Diamond Belejack, Manager of Volunteer Services. Opportunities include clerical duties, medical library assistants, info desk, and reception. Other speciality volunteer options require training such as Midstate's "Soft Touch" program which trains volunteers in the art of soft touching on patients as to aid them in comfort and relaxation. Midstate is also seeking out trained Reiki Masters to perform their service on patients. Even dogs can take part in helping out. Do you think your pup has what it takes to be apart of Midstate's pet therapy project? Ask Belejack how your pet can become certified. To view all the ways you can volunteer visit www.midstatemedical.org and search out "ways to give." You can reach Belejack at 203-694-8572.
Westfield Shopping Mall - 470 Lewis Avenue
The concierge at Westfield Shopping Mall wants to remind to get you in the spirit of giving by choosing a tag off of their Giving Tree. The tree is located on the top floor in front of Hot Topic. While you are shopping, grab a tag from the tree and fulfill a Christmas wish gift for children in need. Drop the gift off before you leave at the concierge desk and Westfield will make sure the gift gets to the child.
Meriden Soup Kitchen at First Baptist Church - 460 Broad Street
The Meriden Soup Kitchen is always looking for volunteers for its meal service Mon-Fri. From 11am-noon, seven different serving groups cook, serve, and clean up after the meals. The Meriden Soup Kitchen has served up to 200 people at a sitting. Those interested in volunteering can call director Pete Meah at 203-980-3372 or email him at Pmeah@cox.net.
Shelter Now-43 Saint Casimir Drive
Meriden's homeless shelter, Shelter Now, is always in need of support from the community. After speaking to representative Maria Wagner, Patch learned that the donations they most require this season are pillows, toiletries, toys, coffee, razors and any food donations, whether from an individual or meals sponsored by a local restaurant. Of the 80 people who reside in the shelter, 26 of them are adult men. Shelter Now is seeking holiday gift donations for the men of their home. Monetary donations are always welcome; make your donation out to Shelter Now. You can reach Maria Wagner at 203-237-4020.
Hunters Ambulance-474 West Main Street
Hunters Ambulance, along with local police, fire, and volunteer fire departments are continuing their annual"Sprit of Giving" campaign, which provides 10 needy families in town with gifts so that they have a holiday to call their own. Hunters also supplies various other provisions such as fuel and toys to about a dozen other families. The company is seeking volunteers to help on Thursday, December 16 at 4:30pm with wrapping and on Saturday the 18th with delivering donated gifts. Call David Lowell for additional information at 203-235-3369.
We at Patch hope this list starts you in the right direction as far as giving back this season. Happy Holidays!