United Way plays matchmaker with Days of Caring projects

Normally, you wouldn’t think of the United Way of Lethbridge and South Western Alberta as a matchmaker, but between October 12 and the end of December the organization is looking to match charities that need some volunteer help and people who want to help.

As part of their on-going “Days of Caring™” program, United Way staff will match groups of people from area businesses or organizations with suitable projects at local charities.

“Generally we are looking for projects that can be completed in a specific time -- usually half-day windows -- that will help the charity overcome a hurdle or solve a problem they might otherwise not be able to because of staffing, time or other challenges,” said United Way Communications and Volunteer Coordinator Connolly Tate-Mitchell.

“Many of our partner agencies have already benefitted from this program, and we are looking now for regular projects that we can have in our inventory that will help us match groups who want to help, with organizations that need some quick, quality help.”

In the past, volunteers have completed projects including interior and exterior painting, sorting and packaging food at area food banks, gift-wrapping and helping with programming at various agencies.

“We may not be able to fulfill every request, but we do want to have a broad range of projects for people to choose from,” Tate-Mitchell said. “The real goal of this effort is to marshal community resources to help an organization out, and for the people who do the helping to have an enjoyable experience.”

Charitable organizations can contact the United Way offices by email at together@lethbridgeunitedway.ca and briefly describe their project, including the time commitment and the estimated number of people they believe could be beneficial. Charities do not have to be a funded partner of the United Way to participate.

Businesses or organizations can also contact the United Way at together@lethbridgeunitedway.ca and briefly describe what their volunteer numbers, time commitments or other considerations may be, and if any members of their volunteer team have specific skills that may be helpful to a project.