Month: April 2016

Retiree Volunteers to Support Food Justice Initatives

Ozzie OhlOzzie Ohl is a retired marketing consultant from Mason City, Iowa who is using his free time to give back to his community. This week, Volunteer Iowa is excited to honor all of the work he’s done for the Hawkeye Harvest Food Bank as our “What’s Your 50?” Volunteer.

This month, Ozzie will have accrued over 1,000 hours with Hawkeye Harvest Food Bank since he began volunteering with them in 2011. During this time, Ozzie has been able to raise over $317,000 for the food bank to relocate to a new, more convenient building, as well as purchase a new van. Because of this, the food bank is able to serve more families and now serves about 1,800 individuals a month. He also devotes his time as a public relations volunteer who spreads the important work that Hawkeye Harvest Food Bank does for the community, enabling them to gain more resources, volunteers and clients.

In addition to all his work with the food bank, Ozzie has helped raise funds for a new dog park, a sledding hill in southern Mason City, helped orchestrate efforts to install playground equipment in West Park, and was a vital part of the effort to make Mason City into a Blue Zones Community. Ozzie enjoys getting things done for his community and relishes the opportunity to work with others who share his passion for service. Ozzie is a perfect example of what it means to be a true advocate for his community, and for the state of Iowa.

Thank you for your service, Ozzie!

What’s your 50? Learn more about the Governor’s Call to Service, and to find volunteer whatsyour50-BUG-final-high-resopportunities statewide. 

Can you nominate someone to be one of our 50 Faces of Volunteers? Fill out this quick spotlight form and help us recognize outstanding volunteers in Iowa.

 

AmeriCorps Member of the Month April 2016

AllredAmeriCorps.jpgAngela Allred is being honored by Volunteer Iowa as the AmeriCorps Member of the Month for April 2016.

Angela is an AmeriCorps State member who serves with AmeriCorps Partners in Learning at Lincoln Elementary School, a Title 1 school located in Dubuque, Iowa. As an Academic Reading Tutor, Angela works with low-scoring readers to improve their confidence and uses different strategies to encourage improved academic achievement in her students.

Her work as an AmeriCorps service member combats low K-3 grade reading proficiency. She has tutored 97 students this year and 88 students in her previous term of service with Lincoln Elementary. Last year, Lincoln Elementary saw 76% of students who participated in the AmeriCorps Reading Program improve their DIBELS score from the fall to the spring. Angela is a dedicated advocate for service and encourages others in her community to volunteer at various events. She cultivates strong relationship with the families of children she serves and increases the overall level of family engagement, a strong indicator of future academic success for children.

Angela has a Bachelor’s in Anthropology and a Master’s in Forest and Wildlife Ecology, and is particularly interested in issues surrounding food justice. She has previously volunteered with the Troy Kids’ Garden in Madison, WI where she helped youth maintain a garden and prepare simple recipes.

To recognize her service, Angela will receive a certificate signed by Governor Branstad and Lt. Governor Reynolds honoring her dedication and efforts towards bettering the State of Iowa.

Thank you for your service, Angela!americorps_iowa_4in

Help us tell the story of AmeriCorps in Iowa! You can nominate someone for AmeriCorps Member of the Month by filling out this short survey:http://ow.ly/X1uRp. Please share the link and help us recognize the AmeriCorps members who are getting things done for Iowa!

Working Mom Supports Latina Mother’s in Des Moines

almahainesAlma Haines has worked for Des Moines Public Schools for over 20 years as a Head Start Family Advocate and most recently as a Head Start Spanish Translator. This week, Volunteer Iowa honors Alma for the work she’s done to help families in Des Moines.

Alma designed the Latina Mother’s Support Group three years ago to help meet the needs of families in her community. She developed a formal group that meets once a month to discuss relevant issues and to share resources. Alma arranges for volunteers to provide childcare and invites community experts to come and speak with the group on topics like health, parenting and education.

Alma took the amazing work that she was doing with DMPS and volunteered her time and effort to make it easier for others in her community to access resources. Mothers who attend the group receive support and education that ultimately helps them support and encourage their children to succeed both academically and personally. Alma, a busy mom of three boys who works two jobs, is an incredible example of a volunteer who helps make her community stronger. She is also involved with the Head Start Parent Policy Committee.

Thank you for your service, Alma!

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What’s your 50? Learn more about the Governor’s Call to Service, and to find volunteer opportunities statewide. 

Can you nominate someone to be one of our 50 Faces of Volunteers? Fill out this quick spotlight form and help us recognize outstanding volunteers in Iowa.

Waterloo Mentor Honored for Service

davevandeventer.jpgThis week, Volunteer Iowa is excited to honor Dave Vandeventer from Waterloo, Iowa. Dave has been a mentor in his community for almost eight years. During that time he has mentored six young men, often past graduation and into adulthood.

Dave is able to support his mentee’s social and emotional growth by serving as an encouraging presence in their lives and motivating them to explore new opportunities. As an active member of the Mentoring Task Force in Waterloo for the past five years, Dave helps coordinate agencies and stakeholders in the community in order to better support mentoring programs. He was also a founding member and president of the Teammates of Waterloo Advisory Board.

Dave has been a tireless advocate for mentoring at the state level through his participation in Volunteer Iowa and Iowa Mentoring Partnership events, including the Day at the Capitol. He is a recipient of the 2016 Excellence in Mentoring Award, the most prestigious state honor a mentor can receive in the State of Iowa, and he will be honored at the State Capitol on April 13 during the Excellence in Mentoring Awards ceremony.

Thank you for your service, Dave!


What’s your 50? Learn more about the Governor’s Call to Service, and to find volunteer whatsyour50-BUG-final-high-resopportunities statewide. 

Can you nominate someone to be one of our 50 Faces of Volunteers? Fill out this quick spotlight form and help us recognize outstanding volunteers in Iowa.