This year we're embarking on our 7th annual Women's Volunteer Day, a grass-roots event that began in 2002 with some women from Herman Miller volunteering to work on a Habitat for Humanity house for a single mother, and resulted in a team of 50 women—more than one Habitat house could accommodate. Every year the event has grown, reaching a record 149 participants last year!
It's an opportunity for volunteers to offer their time, skills, and talent to several nonprofit organizations in the Holland/Zeeland area, to increase awareness of issues for women and children in West Michigan, and to promote networking among women in our community.
Activities we've done in the past include cleaning and organizing, painting and finishing, landscaping and weeding, cooking and baking, washing windows, assembling boxes of lesson plans and materials for coaches of a spring running program, organizing and leading after-school activities for middle school girls, and making homemade cards for families with loved ones who are terminally ill or living in nursing home facilities.
This year we're planning our Women's Volunteer Day on Thursday, September 25. For those who have participated in the past, we wanted to make you aware of a change in format: Volunteers will begin the day at 8:30 a.m. with breakfast at Hope Church in Holland, and start their assignments around 10 a.m., working for 4-6 hours and having lunch on their own. Instead of choosing an agency or task when you register, you'll be assigned a task when you come for breakfast the day of the event. Both the work crews and sharing a meal as participants are fun ways to meet new people and make connections among our community of women. The number of participants will be limited to first-come, first-served and you must be present at breakfast to get your assignment.
Also different from previous years will be our extended invitation to women outside of Herman Miller. While we've always welcomed "outside" participants, we've never actively pursued their participation before. This year, we'd like to promote our community network by encouraging you to include your sisters, friends, mothers, grandmothers, aunts, daughters, partners, and colleagues (aged 18 and older, please).
This message was sent via e-mail to folks who've participated in past years, folks who told us they'd like to participate, or folks someone else thought would like to participate. Please let us know the names and e-mail addresses of those friends, family members, and coworkers you think would like to participate. We'll be sending a registration e-mail later this summer, so remember to save the date!
The Organizing Committee
Women's Volunteer Day
Waltraud Beckmann, Marcia Davis, Cindy DeGraaf, Sue Gadbois, Lois Maassen, Cheryl Murdoch, Carrie Ypma