A burn of determination for 2017

A burn of determination for 2017

When I originally sat down to write this year-in-review post, I was ready for the victory lap. From our number of volunteers and completed service hours to the new partnerships and projects to our funding and staff increases, 2016 was our best year ever as organization. But as I poured over the numbers, documents and photos, my pride quickly became replaced with something quite different.

Go Local Interactive at Reach Out and Read

On Friday, February 19, 2016 employees from Go Local Interactive volunteered at Reach Out and Read. Go Local's Melanie Thaden gave a quick rundown afterwards:

"The team that did go said they had an amazing time! They worked in the main office labeling books and between the five of them, they labeled and boxed 4,200 books in two hours, which is pretty impressive. The team is very excited about this organization and wants to continue to help them out! I am going to help them host a book drive in our office during Reach Out and Read's Annual Hooked on Books fundraiser, so we are really excited about that too!"

If you're looking to get involved just like Go Local Interactive, email outreach@thecallkc.org and ask about our Corporate Cares program.

Community LINC crowdfunding campaign


Who isn’t addicted to social media nowadays? Use your force for good and help Community LINCraise $25,000 for bedding, kitchen and bath essentials.

Join the campaign dubbed #HomesMatter on Wednesday, Feb. 17. Volunteers are needed for one-hour shifts throughout the day from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. to post, tweet, share, or email about the campaign. Posts and things to be shared will be prepared in advance and you’re more than welcome to create their own.

Volunteers can either bring their own technology or use laptops at the facility, where snacks will be provided. Anyone is welcome to participate and use their Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts as a platform to raise awareness and funds.

Community LINC exists to provide interim/immediate housing and services to families battling homelessness. Follow-up services are also offered once a family has successfully completed the program.

#HomesMatter will be an easy and fun way to volunteer with friends for a great cause. Contact us atoutreach@thecallkc.org to sign-up.

Make Valentine's Day "A Night To Shine"


Grab your beau or buddies, fend off the candy and roses, and make someone’s day this Valentine’s. Blue Summit Baptist Church is looking for volunteers to help with their event,Night To Shine, sponsored by the Tim Tebow Foundation.

Night to Shine is an unforgettable prom night event for people with special needs hosted at more than 200 churches all across the globe on February 12. Blue Summit Baptist Church will be hosting their event from 6-9 p.m. at Brush Creek Community Center at 3801 Emanuel Cleaver II Blvd. in Kansas City.

There are tons of awesome volunteer opportunities. You can decorate the community center, work the registration table, shine shoes, do hair and makeup, pass out crowns/tiaras and corsages/boutonnieres, or help with food and clean-up. You can also serve as a “buddy” for a person with special needs by joining them on the dance floor and helping them get their picture taken. For extra incentive, you may get to meet Tim Tebow! (Yes, you read that right.) He surprises attendees at one location, and this year it could be Kansas City.

Volunteers must be 16 years or older and pass a mandatory background check that will be reimbursed by Blue Summit Baptist Church. For more information about the event or to volunteer, contact us atoutreach@thecallkc.org.

Pack your bags for Northland Night at Harvesters


In happens all the time at schools near you — children desperate from hunger are found on Monday mornings hiding food in their pockets.

Teachers in North Kansas City are instructed to watch for signs like these and for good reason. According to feednorthlandkids.org, 1 in 5 Northland kids live in food insecure homes. To combat that, Feed Northland Kids is collaborating with Harvesters for Northland Night at Harvesters.

Volunteers are needed for Thurs., Jan. 28 from 6-8 p.m. to sort donations and fill food bags. This monthly event can accommodate up to 50 volunteers so bring your friends, family, coworkers, neighbors, etc. Children 8-or-older are welcome to participate. Similar events will be held on Feb. 18, March 17 and April 21.

Feed Northland Kids is a nonprofit organization focused on addressing weekend nutrition and hunger by providing healthy, kid-friendly foods for school-age children, living north of Kansas City, Mo. They participate in a BackSnack Program, create awareness, raise funding and identify solutions to stop hunger.

Please sign-up in advance at outreach@thecallkc.org if you’re interested in participating.


On Thursday, Dec. 10, members of Go Local Interact volunteered at The Sheffield Place.

“We had a great time helping out Sheffield Place and getting to see the shelter on Thursday,” Go Local’s Melanie Thaden said. “I have attached the pictures we took of the team stuffing holiday cards. We also had a hygiene drive at our holiday party on Friday for Gillis and we were able to donate a ton of products to them which was so great.”



Make this holiday season of giving a warm one for a family in need of shelter. Community LINC desperately needs 6-10 volunteers this week to assist with apartment prep/turnover for their temporary housing program.

This is a unique opportunity to help a family transition out of homelessness. Volunteer shifts are available Monday, Dec. 7 through Thursday, Dec. 10 from 9 a.m.- 5 p.m. Any amount of time you can donate is crucial so the new residents can move in this week. Volunteers will help with cleaning, painting, moving small pieces of furniture and other preparations.

If you can help this week, please contactoutreach@thecallkc.org immediately to sign-up for a shift.

Soccer lovers called to assist


The Kansas City Sports Commission and Foundation needs volunteers to assist with the 2015 NCAA Division III Men and Women’s Soccer Championships next weekend. KC is proud to host this exciting tournament that will feature college teams from all over the country. 

Games will be held on Friday, Dec. 4 and Saturday, Dec. 5 at Swope Soccer Village. Volunteers are needed to assist with taking tickets, merchandise sales, ticket sales and more. December 4 shifts include 9:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., 1:30-5:30 p.m. and 5:30-8:30 p.m. while December 5 shifts are noon-4 p.m. and 4-8 p.m. If you are interested and would like to sign up for a shift, please email us at outreach@thecallkc.org.

For a full listing of games, visit the Division 3 Soccer Championship website.

APO rakes the town with Northland Shepherd Center

On Nov. 7, 2015, members of Alpha Phi Omega raked leaves at local veterans' homes for the Northland Shepherd Center.

APO at KC Autism Training Center fundraiser

On Oct. 30, 2015, Alpha Phi Omega volunteered at the Kansas City Autism Training Center's fundraiser — Target Autism Clay Shoot.

Overland Trails Elementary decorate bags for Morning Glory

On Oct. 6, 2015, the students at Overland Trails Elementary decorated donation bags for the homeless at Morning Glory Ministries.

Overland Trails Elementary double-dips in September


It was a busy a month for the students at Overland Trails Elementary School, and not just in the classroom.

On Sept. 15, 2015, students and Alzheimer's patients came together in the name of service. Thirteen children and accompanying adults from OTE volunteered at Grace Gardens Manor, an assisted living facility for seniors located in Overland Park, Kan.

The group sat in a large circle to play an interactive and therapeutic game of throwing balloons back and forth. Such activities support an Alzheimer patient's self-reinforcement and boosts the person’s sense of being in a group.

“The kids were tentative at first as were the residents, but soon the kids were giggling and the residents were smiling and engaging with the children," OTE community chair Beth Petrikin said.  "Each child shook the hand of each resident before we left.”

Half a week later, the students were back out in the community. On September 26, OTE visited Great Plains SPCA, an animal welfare organization in Mission, Kan. that serves more than 35,000 needy pets annually.

“We had a great turnout of 11 kids and 6 adults," Petrikin said. "We learned about their mission and toured the facility. The kids worked on the 'sparkle squad,' cleaning windows throughout the facility. They wrapped up the visit with time for the kids to play with a couple of sweet dogs that needed socialization."

If you're interested in having your children's school volunteer around Kansas City, contact us at outreach@thecallkc.org to sign-up for our community matters program.


VinSolutions serves at Shawnee Community Services


On Sept. 10, 2015, VinSolutions made a difference. They may not have seen the actual impact that day, but by volunteering at Shawnee Community Services, they helped feed hundreds of people in need.

This was not the typical work day for VinSolutions. Usually, the software company helps car dealers make connections with their customers through easy-to-use software, including mobile devices. Yet last week, they took a break from their normal routine, sending 13 employees to volunteer instead.

The VinSolutions employees helped Shawnee Community Services assemble snack packs, stock food pantries and complete meal preparations for the upcoming weeks. Through these types of service, SCS has worked for over 30 years with like-hearted volunteers to feed and clothe Kansas City area residents. They could not do it without the wonderful help from people and companies just like VinSolutions.

“My guys had a great time and they definitely felt like they contributed," VinSolutions' Jennifer Rens said. "We'll be doing that one again."

To receive more information on how to sign-up you and your co-workers for our Corporate Cares program, contact outreach@thecallkc.org.


Madminton: Mad skill meets good will


Where can you find crazy costumes, average badminton skills and prizes for the winners and losers, all in one place?

Madminton is Kansas City's first annual badminton tournament on Sunday, Sept. 13. It’s a combination of badminton, beer, bites and bands for one epic day. Plus, it is all for a good cause.

The tournament is hosted by Two West, Inc. to support Giving the Basics (GTB). GTB is a non-profit organization that gathers items donated by individuals and businesses to give to local organizations in need. They include the necessities like shampoo, soap, toilet paper and other personal hygiene products.

This weekend, join fellow Kansas Citians for a day destined to be a good time — while helping provide the essentials to those who need it. Subsequently, the event is in need of volunteers to make this day a special one. Assistance is desired for set-up, helping the games running smoothly and clean-up afterwards. If you and your friends can volunteer at this event, please contact us at outreach@thecallkc.org.