Volunteers who look forward to lending a paw for Augusta University’s annual Day of Service this year will still get an opportunity to serve the community, but it will look a little different.
The annual event gives AU students, employees and their families the opportunity to come together in service to the community and to help those who need it most. This year it will be held virtually Nov. 2-20. Instead of one day of service, our impact will be broadened by serving over the course of three weeks this fall.
Additionally, instead of registering individually as in years past, volunteers are encouraged to form service teams, then choose a team leader who will work with the group to choose a project and register the team beginning Sept. 29. Photos will be taken and shared of the great work teams are doing, and instead of in-person celebrations, teams will be engaged through social media.
Though in-person activities are limited, there is still plenty of work to be done.
“We have more than 60 service projects available to our volunteers. Because, quite frankly, not as many people are getting out there to volunteer as they normally would. Because of COVID-19, our local community organizations are in need of help now more than ever,” said Tina Baggott, associate vice president of Volunteer Services and Community Engagement.
Volunteer teams have a wide array of virtual service project options to choose from. Organizations who have requested help have gotten creative with projects. For example, Hope House — a residential treatment facility for women with substance misuse and untreated mental illness — has asked for donations of winter coats and asked that notes of encouragement be placed in the pockets for the women who will receive them.
Georgia War Veterans Nursing Home would like teams to put together “Red, White and Blue Goose Bags” filled with comfort items for residents. And Golden Harvest Food Bank would like food drives to help fulfill their mission to end hunger. Some organizations would like people to sew masks for them.
“We’ve got several of them asking for a more specialized skill set,” Baggott said. “Like the Augusta Museum, who is looking for a group to help them produce a virtual video tour of the museum so people can see and access the museum even when social distancing is so prominent.”
Closer to home, donations are needed to stock the Butterfly Cart at AU Medical Center and the Child Life team at the Children’s Hospital of Georgia would like teams to put together gender-neutral stockings to deliver to their patients for the upcoming holiday season.
All of the service projects will be available for viewing when team project registration opens on Sept. 29. For more information, visit the Virtual Days of Service website or contact the Office of Volunteer Services and Community Engagement at firstname.lastname@example.org.