How to Set the Foundation for a Successful Year

GivingTuesday was great and the end of the year donations came in pretty steady so now

Online Giving

Online Giving

your nonprofit organization is beginning to move through 2015.  We already have one month almost down!  How is your organization building it’s foundation?  Are you focusing on strengthening your fundraising message or investing in your volunteer coordination and retention?

What about these 24 hour, 48 hour fundraising events that sneak up on you and a few weeks before the big day your organization is scrambling around trying to scream your message the loudest.  Do you wantCOVAAC Workshop January 2015 to learn how to gear up for an effective and successful fundraising campaign?  COVAAC and Center for Learning Through Service at AACC has a workshop that will help you get focused on the important aspects of online giving.   This FREE workshop is offered January 29th 11:30am at AACC in the  CADE building Room 219.  RSVP to Evette Watson by Monday, January 26, 2015 via e-mail at ewatson@bellomachre.org please place “COVAAC Workshop” in the subject line.

Volunteers are most likely the backbone of your organization.  Without volunteers many of the projects, tasks and events wouldn’t happen.  So how much time are you investing on creating a sustainable volunteer program?  In the  publication,  A Guide to Investing in Volunteer Resources Management: Improve Your Philanthropic Portfolio, they state, volunteers augment an organization’s financial and in-kind resources, producing greater value for each dollar invested”.  This collaborative publication written in by the UPS Foundation,  Association for Volunteer Administration and the Points of Light Foundation looks into the importance of effective volunteer management.

It is time to start investing in your volunteers and AACVC can help!  Executive Director Fay Mauro will be sharing her knowledge and experience with volunteer management in two very useful courses offered at Anne Arundel Community College in Arnold.  The two Volunteer Coordinationcourses are: Planning a Volunteer Program offered February 24th 6pm-9:30pm and  Recruiting & Placing Volunteer offered March 10 6pm – 9:30pm.

You will learn the steps to create, maintain and improve a volunteer program.  As an added benefit, AACVC will reimburse the course fee for any of our Premier Partners up to the cost of the Premier Partnership payment.  Questions about signing up? Please contact Fay Mauro at the Volunteer Center, 410-897-9207 or email fay.aacvc@outlook.com

Make 2015 the year of investing in volunteers.  The returns will payoff and your organization will be stronger for it.

 

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AACVC – What We Do For Your Community

As the Volunteer Center reflects 0n 2014, we want to share some of our accomplishments, but first…

We are excited to announce our new name and new logo…Anne Arundel County AACVC LogoVolunteer Center or AACVC.  We made this change with the awareness that our previous name was just too long to type.  So instead of trying to remember our name, you can focus on the task-at-hand, volunteering and your mission!  You only have to remember 5 letters — AACVC!  We want you to Tweet, Facebook and Instagram #AACVC during your volunteer service, events or projects!  What are you waiting for?  Follow and share #AACVC right now…go to AACVC.org and click on the social media links.

Now, here is a recap of 2014

  • 4000+ volunteers helped our partner community organizations.
  • New “Spotlight program” for the Military and their families introducing volunteering as a great way to transition to the community, increase social and professional
    Fort Meade Spotlight on the Military

    Fort Meade Spotlight on the Military

    connections, and gain new skills and experience.

  • AACVC organized seven Days of Service to mobilize hundreds of volunteers of all ages and abilities to make a real difference in Anne Arundel County.
  • Strengthened nonprofits with training, and consulting to better use skilled volunteers so that the nonprofits can concentrate on their missions.
  • AACVC staff so believe in our nonprofits that they volunteered with some of our partner agencies to solve hardware, software and other “back-office” problems.
  • AACVC encouraged and engaged youth in Anne Arundel County to serve and learn while applying their time and talents in our community.
  • AACVC “Notes in Coats” project collected more than 200 coats to keep men, women and children throughout the County warm this winter.

AACVC is razor focused on supporting our partners to meet their volunteer needs.  We focus on the volunteers so our partners can stay focused on their mission.  All partners benefit from the large reach that AACVC has in the county, but there are added benefits for our Premier Partners.

Another priority for AACVC is to motivate students throughout the county to serve in their communities.  AACVC actively recruits students from middle schools, high schools

Congress Woman Donna Edwards and President of AACVC, Bruce Morgenstern at Annapolis High School during the Congresswomen's College Fair.

Congresswoman Donna Edwards and the President of AACVC, Bruce Morgenstern at Annapolis High School during the Congresswoman’s       College & Career Fair.

and colleges by visiting their schools, attending outreach fairs and offering a student focused webpage on the AACVC website.

AACVC helps people to see volunteering as an opportunity to learn new skills, to network and to take a leadership role in their community.  According to the Corporation for National and Community Service “volunteering is associated with an increased likelihood of finding employment for all volunteers regardless of a person’s gender, age, ethnicity, geographical area, or the job market conditions.” In essence, volunteering is a pathway to employment (source).

We are thankful to have your active support this year by volunteering, fundraising and raising awareness for AACVC.  For one last chance to donate to AACVC, please click here and your donation will go toward one of the many programs AACVC offers the community of Anne Arundel County!

Happy New Year!!!

AACVC

AACVC

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February is Heart to Heart Month

Volunteer_Heart

What warms your heart? Is it making someone smile? Meeting people? Volunteering? The Volunteer Center has dubbed February as “Heart to Heart” Month. We encourage everybody to show love and care to others by volunteering. In honor of Valentine’s Day, we are interested in how you have shown love and care for others through volunteering. Share your favorite personal volunteering story with us by writing about how it has helped you grow. Sending in pictures also reflect your story; as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words!

hearttrea
And remember, the Volunteer Center is looking for stories to publish during National Volunteering Week in April! AND, there will be a prize drawing on April 12, 2015!  As long as you enter your story by February 14, 2015, you will be entered in the drawing for National Volunteer Week! There will be 10 new winners, so submit your story soon!
**One entry per person. In order to be entered into the National Volunteer Week drawing, stories must be submitted by February 14, 2015.

hands-hearts

So, take some time to think about where, what, and with whom you have volunteered; do some soul searching if necessary! Then, simply fill out the survey ,submit your picture and get back to volunteering!

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This Holiday, Give Gifts that Give Back

This Holiday, it is easier then ever to Give Gifts That Give Back and we are going to give you two opportunities to #GiveBack to AACVC.

You have heard of Amazon!  No, not the lush forest teaming with 40-50 million species of Amazon Forestanimals (mostly beetles that have not been identified..) but the biggest e-commerce company, based out of Seattle, Washington.  You may have purchased something from the website in the past year.  The Amazon River runs through Brazil, Columbia and Peru in South America, the extremely AmazonRiverconvenient online department store, Amazon.com, has separate retail websites for United States, and many other countries!  Wow….both Amazon.com and the Amazon River have a far reach!

Amazon.comIn 1994 Amazon.com was founded by Jeff Bezos as a simple e-commerce bookstore, today Amazon.com offers shoppers the opportunity to pick a charitable foundation you would like to support while you conveniently shop on the website.   What does this mean?  This is how it works, go to Smile.Amazon.com, sign in with your current Amazon username and password, then search for the Volunteer Center for Anne Arundel County and pick us as the organization you want to support.  When you shop through Smile.Amazon.com you’ll find the exact same products, selections and shopping convenience with the added bonus that Amazon will donate 0.5% of yourSmile.Amazon.com purchase to AACVC!  This is so simple!  Start shopping Smile.Amazon.com on Cyber Monday!

Who doesn’t enjoy being Pampered?

PamperedChefThe Pampered Chef® has a vision that someday families all around the world will know the joy and rewards of gathering together in the tradition of family mealtimes!  Tis the season to enjoy meals with friends and family members and to give gifts that encourage simple gatherings.  AACVC is privileged to have Pampered Chef Consultant, Stacy Itzel host a Pampered Chef display and fundraiser.  Stacy will be at AACVC’s office (2666 Riva Road, Suite 130 Annapolis, MD) to kick off #GivingTuesday, December 2, from 9am-Noon.  Enjoy homemade breakfast treats and coffee while checking off those holiday gift purchases.  When you order with Stacy, 15% of your purchase goes to AACVC.

PamperedChefGifts

Shop today and #giveback

Can’t make the party…no worries, click this link and shop the online ordering page.  This fantastic fundraiser runs from December 2nd – December 13th.

Two easy ways to give back….one more suggestion…..just donate to AACVC. Click here to donate today!

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#GivingTuesday

GT_Lockup_alt1

First, there was Black Friday, then Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday.  Now presenting #GivingTuesday! A global day dedicated to giving back.

i-care

On Tuesday, December 2, 2014, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world will come together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give. 

It’s a simple idea. Just find a way for your family, community, company or organization to come together to give something more. Then tell everyone you can about how you are giving.  THEN take an #UNslelfie!  You don’t have to be a world leader or a billionaire to give back. #GivingTuesday is about ordinary people coming together doing extraordinary things, including here in Anne Arundel County!

Join AACVC and make your community giving part of a global celebration of generosity. We have TONS of opportunities for you to get involved—there’s something for everybody and so many different ways to give back!  December 2nd is just the beginning of the giving season, while we know the holiday season can be a busy time of year, we can all set aside some time to give to a cause we believe in.  We have over 300 non-profit partners listed on the AACVC.org website.  There is bound to be an organization or a cause that you are interested in serving as a volunteer.

Whether you want to give your time, lend your expertise, or contribute donations–everyone has something to offer! We want to help you help others in whatever way we can, and we have some great events and projects in the works to get you started.

Here are a few ways to get involved on #GivingTuesday:

 

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Student Volunteers Discover Surprises During Service

What surprises there may be when you volunteer!

What surprises there may be when you volunteer!

Five student volunteers headed out to Yellowfin in Edgewater for an evening of service, networking and card making. They helped Anne Arundel County Volunteer Center set up and engage members of the Next Gen of Anne Arundel County (Next Gen) in a volunteer activity.  Middle school students, Toni Fiocco-Mizer, Mia Camm and Leia Liberto enthusiastically encouraged the Next Gen’ers to create colorful Thanksgiving cards.  The cards will be included in Thanksgiving meals that are served at organizations like Bello Machre, Arundel Lodge or Meals on Wheels.  Toni Fiocco-Mizer was surprised and happy that the adults took the time to inquire about the volunteer activity and she said, “they did the project with actual excitement”.  The card making table was full of caring adults coloring, writing thoughtful notes and carefully placing foam stickers on colorful construction paper.

Seeds for Success' Executive Director, John Palinski creates Thanksgiving cards.

Seeds for Success’ Executive Director, John Palinski creates Thanksgiving cards.stickers on colorful construction paper.

This type of engagement is not surprising coming from a group of professionals who created Next Gen.  Because of their like-minded desire to be philanthropic and make an impact in their community and with the support of the Community Foundation of AACounty, Next Gen became a group with the common goal of growing a sustainable giving circle.  These professionals don’t just write checks, they volunteer in their communities. Sitting down with the middle school students, rolling up their sleeves and diving into some serious card making was a perfect fit this group!

Not only were Next Gen members at the event, several local non-profit organizations such as Books for International Goodwill (B.I.G.), Seeds for Success, Box of Rain, and Foodlink were involved with networking and engagement.  B.I.G. brought some of their books and handed them out for free.  Severna Park High School student Kyrsten Brewis, brought home a B.I.G. few books and also learned more about how she can get involved with B.I.G as a volunteer. She said one of the things she enjoyed and was surprised about during her volunteering was, “seeing all the different organizations and learning about the different things they do to help out, like tutoring”. Brandon Fiocco-Mizer, sophomore at Severna Park High School learned he can use his understanding and knowledge of algebra to tutor other students.

Mia Camm and Leia Liberto are members of the Jr. Honors Society at Severna Park Middle School and this volunteer activity fulfilled some of their required service hours. They got much more than volunteer hours.  Leah was surprised about “how much fun it was to get together with people who really wanted to help our community”.

High School students Brandon Fiocco-Mizer and Kyrsten Brewis talk with Next Gen Board Member, Hall Chaney.

High School students Brandon Fiocco-Mizer and Kyrsten Brewis talk with Next Gen Board Member, Hall Chaney.

With the support of the student volunteers and the participation of the Next-Gen members, the service project was a huge success and 38 cards were created!  Volunteering is a great way to meet new people, learn ways you can help in your community and add to your skill set.  If you are interested in learning more about student focused volunteering, visit AACVC.org and click on the student portal.

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Take Your Service a Step Further and FLEX

 

FLEX LeadersShow your muscles and FLEX!  Take your volunteer service a step further and learn how to be a FLEX Volunteer Leader. Leadership is a skill that needs to be practiced. There are ten behaviors or traits that create a great leader, they are honesty, ability to delegate, communication, sense of humor, confidence, commitment, positive attitude, creativity, intuition and the ability to inspire, according to Forbes, article “Top 10 Qualities Make a Great Leader”, published online 12/19/2012.  You can learn and practice these skills as a FLEX Volunteer Leader.

Dominic Mori was an Intern at the Volunteer Center from 2012-2014 and this is what he has to say about being a FLEX Volunteer Leader, “I was an intern at the Volunteer Center for 2 years from 2012-2014 and became very involved with outreach to partners, environmental projects and the cards projects.  Interning at the volunteer center has helped my skills in communication, project management and outreach.  As a FLEX leader I gained confidence in my ability to lead individuals and groups through meaningful volunteer projects.”

If you are the kind of person who can galvanize a group into action and see results of your efforts, join us on October 27th, 5:00pm-6:00 pm at the Volunteer Center, 2666 Riva Road, Suite 130, Annapolis, 21401.  You will gain important strategies, and key principles to volunteer leadership from professionals in the field.  You will leave the training with new skills and contacts to carry out important and meaningful volunteer projects.

To sign up for this exciting training, email holli@volunteerannearundel.org  or call          410-897-9207.  Yes…it is FREE!

 

 

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