What Change Looks Like: 2014 Volunteer Expo

Thank you to the thousands of people that attended the Ninth Annual HandsOn Twin Cities Volunteer Expo at the Mall of America on Saturday. It was a snowy day, but that didn’t seem to stop anyone from coming out to learn about opportunities to serve. With that kind of dedication, it’s no wonder that the Twin Cities continues to be #1 in volunteerism!

84 organizations were on site sharing their opportunities with Mall of America guests, 13 of which offered “speed volunteering” opportunities for people to see how fun and easy volunteering can be. Hundreds of people stopped for 5-15 minutes to speed volunteer. Volunteers engaged in projects:

Speed Volunteering - One Heartland

  • creating “thinking of you” and “get well” cards for families served by Tamarisk
  • making fleece tie-blankets for Miracles of Mitch Foundation
  • sharing “Tips for Living in Minnesota” for exchange students participating in AFS Intercultural Programs
  • making fleece dog toys for the service dogs at Helping Paws
  • and many more!

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Congratulations to Gibbs Museum for winning Best Booth! Their booth was so inviting, interactive and colorful. Honorable mentions go to Mano a Mano International and Bridging. The booth displays were the best we’ve ever seen this year – thanks for bringing your “A game,” affiliates!

 

Eleven Who Care: KARE 11 joined us at the Expo to announce the 2014 Eleven Who Care honorees. Watch for their stories once a month throughout 2014 on KARE Saturday.

Be The Change: Congratulations to the HOTC Be The Change award winners, Judy Olhoft (Kids ‘n Kinship), Jesse Flanagan (Mano a Mano International), Carolyn Roberts (Tamarack Nature Center) and Yohanis Shitta (Lino Lakes YMCA). Each award winner was given a certificate of thanks and the nonprofit they serve received a financial contribution on their behalf.

For those organizations on site, thank you for sharing information on your great programs.  For those who attended to find opportunities, thank you for coming. New volunteer opportunities are added to our database daily, so come back to our website often to find the right opportunity for you, your family, or your work team.

Were you there? If you attended the event, please leave a comment and tell us about your experience! We’d love to hear how you heard about it, the connections you made, and how you plan to use the information you found!

The Expo would not have been possible without the wonderful support from our sponsors: 3M, KARE 11, Land O’Lakes, Greater Twin Cities United Way’s Caring Connection, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans and Xcel Energy. In addition, in-kind support was received from: Mall of America; Thomson Reuters; Clear Channel; KARE 11 News; and Amanda Cox Graphic Design.

Thanks to everyone who was involved. Together, we can all Be the Change!

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