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Community Service

 

2021-2022


 7th and 8th Grade Students, CLICK HERE to log your hours



Research shows that performing community service with peers makes people feel happy and fulfilled!  


The GWMS community service program is provided to connect our students with the community and the world through acts of service.  By participating, students bond with their classmates, discover new interests and abilities, learn to work collaboratively, take on leadership roles, and learn the value and benefits of helping others.


Each GWMS 7th Grader is required to fulfill ten hours of community service throughout the year, though students often complete many more.  Students may choose from one of the organizations listed on the website, or any other not-for-profit organization.  Organizations will reach out to students who express interest during the Community Service Fair, held in October.  Students are also encouraged to follow their interests and seek opportunities that are not listed.  These may be opportunities presented through elementary school events, religious organizations, scouting, athletics, and personal connections.  The best community service is the community service that students will return to long after their ten hours have been completed.


After participating in any service, students should complete the Google Form.  Please be aware, these hours will not be visible in Skyward, so students should retain a copy of the completed Google Form for their records.  Students must log their own hours from their school accounts.
 


7th and 8th Grade Community Service Opportunities 

See below for a list of community service programs. This list is not all-inclusive. Students may also fulfill hours with a non-profit organization of their choice.  No signatures or approvals are necessary.  If you have a service organization that would like volunteers, please contact

 George Washington Middle School.

  


Elementary Schools

ORCHARD HSA

Home & School Association benefiting Orchard Elementary School.

Volunteer Opportunities: Orchard Fun Run

Location/Date: TBD 2022

Contact: Jenna Hammond at orchardvolunteerlead@gmail.com

 



 RIDGE HSA

Home & School Association benefitting Ridge Elementary School.

Volunteer Opportunities: Assist with opportunities as they arise over the course of the year, like: 

  • Back to School Picnic
  • Bingo Night 
  • After-School Set-up and/or take-down at Book Fair and Science Fair
  • Monthly after-school opportunities to help teachers in their classrooms or the secretaries in the office

Timing:  On-going

Location:  325 W. Ridgewood Ave, Ridgewood

Contact:  Jean Whitehead

WILLARD HSA

Home & School Association benefiting Willard Elementary School

Volunteer Opportunities: Assist with opportunities as they arise over the course of the year, including but not limited to Bingo Night, Fun Run, Panther Pride Week, Variety Show, Circus Night, International Day,

Timing: 

Bingo Night 6-9pm, date (Jan or Feb)

Fun Run, 3-5pm, date (late April)

Panther Pride Week time varies, date (late April) Variety Show 6-9pm, date (May or June)

Circus Night 6-9pm date (usually March) International Day 6-9pm date (late May)

Location:  601 Morningside Rd, Ridgewood

Contact: Anna Crane at willardelementaryhsa@gmail.com


Outdoor Environmental Projects


                             MEVO

To be the model for the creation of scalable ecological solutions that inspires and empowers people to take action for a better future.


Part of this mission is to build grassroots momentum for the environmental movement within local communities and to inspire individuals to create long-term change within their communities. Since MEVO was founded in 2008, we have mobilized over 7,000 volunteers of all ages to carry out over 70,000 hours of environmental community service at over 450 environmental volunteer events in Northern New Jersey and Lower New York State.


Volunteer Opportunities: Clean up events at the farm and local trails, composting, cleaning up pollution.

Timing: Multiple dates!  October 30, November 4, November 11, November 18

Location:  At the farm, see website to sign up for morning (9-12) or afternoon (1:30-4:30), must be present for the start of the session if attending.  

Contact: sign up at mevo.org  - contact person Violet Reed, violet@mevo.org

 

 

Green Team at GW

The George Washington Middle School Green Team’s purpose is to educate, empower, and inspire students, staff and our community to establish and promote environmentally sustainable practices within our school, town, and at home.  We strive to educate the students about the importance of our role  and its effect within the entire global community.  We will aim to support students in becoming leaders who will make our community a healthier, more sustainable place for future generations.  

Volunteer Opportunities:

Maintain the GW courtyard garden by planting, create posters for better recycling practices in the GW cafeteria, composting and help with other Green Team sustainability initiatives throughout the year.

Timing: Varies. Events will be held weekdays after school.

Location:  155 Washington Place, Ridgewood, NJ 07450

Contact:  Kristen Daffron (kristen.daffron@gmail.com) and Puja Nair (pvaidya@gmail.com)



Working With Children With Special Needs

CAMP SNOWFLAKE

Provides year-round programs for children and young adults with disabilities.

Volunteer Opportunities: Students can participate and assist in activities, such as arts & crafts, games and activities. 

Timing:  Camp Snowflake runs Saturday afternoons from 12:30 PM – 4:00 PM, from September to May. 

Location:  1133 E. Ridgewood Ave, Ridgewood 

Contact: Cathy Talerico at campsunsnow@gmail.com


 RBSA SPECIAL ALL-STARS

RBSA’s All Stars Program Needs Volunteers! 

What Is the All-Stars Program?  All-Stars is an RBSA program designed for children with special needs and is open to residents of Ridgewood and surrounding towns. Players (ages 5 and up) are matched with one or more peer volunteers (ages 12 and up) to assist them through baseball/softball stations (throwing, hitting off a tee, etc.).

What do the Volunteers do?  Our student volunteers are matched with a player to help assist them through some fun baseball/softball stations (batting, throwing, base-running, etc.).  RBSA board members and coaches are also on hand to direct the players and volunteers through the stations. It’s a great way to enjoy the Spring weather, make new friends and connect with old friends too!  Our players, volunteers and coaches all have a great time!  There is no need to have prior baseball or softball experience, but it helps to have a little baseball/softball knowledge.  This is a two hour commitment on Sunday mornings in May.  Ideally volunteers will be able to come to all 4 Spring sessions as our players often look forward to connecting with their volunteers each week. 

Timing: Sunday mornings in May (exact dates TBD)

Location:  Vets Field, Ridgewood (exact location TBD)

Contact:  Kathleen Tavani (kdenicholas@yahoo.com) or Mike Kelly (kellymjk@gmail.com)

 

RIDGEWOOD ALL-STARS SPECIAL NEEDS BASKETBALL PROGRAM

Provides basketball clinics for girls and boys ranging in age from pre-kindergarten to high school that have a wide range of special needs.

Volunteer Opportunities:  Assist special needs players in organized basketball sessions. No basketball skills or knowledge of basketball are necessary— just a willingness to work with kids.

The program is very basic and emphasizes socialization more than the acquisition of specific skills. The goal is to assign a volunteer to every participant.

Timing: Sundays in January and February. Dates and time are dependent on gym availability AND COVID guidelines. Usually held between 8:45-10:15am. Prefer that volunteers are present each week to ensure consistency for the students.  *There will also be a 30-minute Orientation held at GW in late November. This will be counted toward your volunteer hours.

Location: Ben Franklin Middle School  (orientation at GW) - waiting for confirmation from the district

Contact: Cara Murray at murrayc@hlcmail.com 


RIDGEWOOD UNIFIED PROGRAM

The Ridgewood Unified Program brings all students of all abilities together for after school activities, sports, and events. We need volunteers to help run activities and events such as Field Day, Basketball practice, and Track practice. We would like to pair special education students with general education students during the events. 

Please email jvasquez@ridgewood.k12.nj.us for our information and please check our website here! Click Here!


Working With The Elderly


RIDGECREST

Ridgecrest Apartments, also known as Ridgecrest Senior Housing, are an independent living, affordable housing community for older adults age 62+ and people with disabilities.  Ridgecrest opened in 1984 and is owned by Ridgewood Senior Citizens Housing Corporation Inc, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.  Ridgecrest Apartments are subsidized by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). 

Our Ever Thankful Community Pantry contains specific dietary, religious, and cultural fresh, frozen, and non-perishable food items. It also contains toiletry items, paper products, cleaning products, and adult incontinence products.  These items help to bridge the gap for residents when necessary.

Our Social Programming Director organizes social activities, health and wellness activities, care package distributions, and partners with community agencies on available resources and programs that benefit our residents.  

Ridgecrest is home to over 150 residents. Despite any hardships that they may face, we strive to inspire HOPE to empower our residents to live their best lives - we want to help them THRIVE!

Volunteer Opportunities:  Due to COVID-19 safety protocols our current volunteer opportunities are offsite

collections of items that we are in need of. 

Timing:  On-going

Location: 7-11 Ridge Road, Ridgewood

Contact:  Sue Ullrich, Social Programming Director, at RidgecrestActivities@gmail.com


Website – RidgecrestSeniorHousing.org


The Valley Hospital Postcard Project

The Valley Hospital is a not-for-profit community hospital located right here in Ridgewood.  We are piloting a program which is simple and will bring a smile to the faces of hospitalized patients!


Volunteer Opportunities: Write postcards with a scripted message that will be delivered to Valley Hospital patients on their meal trays.  You will pick up the postcards at school, fill them out when you can, and return them to school.

Timing: On-going cycles, but the first batch will be due December 15th

Location: Any place you can fill out a postcard - will need to be returned to school.

Contact: Jessica Franklin, MD franje@valleyhealth.com or Katie Miller, millka@valleyhealth.com


Special Events

THE WOMAN’S CLUB OF RIDGEWOOD 

A 501(c)3 Charitable Non-Profit Organization that supports charities and other organizations in Ridgewood, NJ and surrounding communities. All revenue generated goes towards the maintenance and upkeep of the Woman’s Club of Ridgewood, as well as its various local charities.

Volunteer Opportunities: 

  • Help with sorting items for a garage sale in February
  • Possible ticket sales for house tours, COVID dependent

Timing:  February for Garage sale

Location:  215 W. Ridgewood Ave, Ridgewood

Contact:  Pamela Swords/ Kristin Plumley pswords101@gmail.com or  kiko_plumley@mac.com


Collections, Drives and Donations

CHILDREN’S AID AND FAMILY SERVICES  

Baby Basics & Disability Support Service Group Homes   

Preserves, protects and, when needed, provides for families. Motivated by compassion for vulnerable children, young adults, frail elderly and their families, we provide high quality and innovative services that meet their social, educational and emotional needs. 

Volunteer Opportunities:  

·        Run a drive to collect baby items and personal care items for kids living in group homes and seniors (i.e., diapers, wipes, formula, shampoos, soaps, deodorant, etc,).       

Timing:  on going

Location:  Children’s Aid Office- 200 Robin Road Paramus, NJ 07652

Contact information: Christina Diomede, Volunteer and Resource Specialist cdiomede@cafsnj.org



OASIS, a Haven for Women & Children

Our mission is to change the lives of women and children by breaking the cycle of poverty through compassionate programs designed to feed, clothe, educate and empower women and children in need.  

Volunteer Opportunities: Conduct various drives including:  food, clothing, baby items, new toys, seasonal items, and personal hygiene items on behalf of Oasis, tutor children in reading & math Saturday mornings

Timing:  On-going

Location:  59 Mill St, Paterson

Contact: Signe Howard at signehoward@oasisnj.org or (973) 881-8307 x121



Miscellaneous

GIRLS ON THE RISE 

A peer advisory program for GW girls to work with 5th grade girls to help them transition to middle school. 

Volunteer Opportunities:  The GW girls meet once with each of the 5th grade classrooms in the spring for a 1-hour workshop.  They share their own transition experiences across 4 main topic areas: school smarts, self-esteem, technology and social.  Eighth grade girls that volunteered last year will help train the new 7th grade volunteers to provide useful tips and lead fun, interactive games across each of the topic areas.

Timing:  Contact Jennifer Burke in January for Spring workshop

Contact:  Jennifer Burke at jendevlinburke@gmail.com

 


RIDGEWOOD PUBLIC LIBRARY

Dedicated to providing information, education, culture and inspiration. We encourage our community to pursue life-long learning and the enjoyment of books, programs and resources in a variety of formats. We strive to offer the best possible library materials, staff, technology and facility, with ready and equal access to residents of all ages. 

Volunteer Opportunities:

Timing:  Please check back during the Spring and Summer season. 
Collection Specialists: organize library materials on carts, shelf read, straighten sections as well as retrieve items to fill loan requests.

Teen Volunteer: select books to read with a child in a one-to-one session. Our teen volunteers can also assist with various arts and crafts and children/teen programs.


Timing: 
On-going
Bibliomaniacs: for those who cannot volunteer time in the library can earn hours by reading a book and submitting a review. Subject to guidelines and rules, teens can earn 30 minutes for each book review submitted.

Contact: Justin Kontonicolaou, Young Adult Librarian, at 201-670-5600 x112 or jkontonicolaou@ridgewoodlibrary.org



SOCIAL SERVICE ASSOCIATION (Ridgewood Vicinity)

An organization of neighbors helping neighbors- on a mission to provide food, emergency rent, utility assistance and support services to individuals & families in Ridgewood and surrounding areas.  

Volunteering Opportunities:  Student volunteers can stock shelves at the pantry (located at the Ridgewood train station) for 1 hour after school (about twice a month) from January to April.  Students may also be contacted with other volunteer opportunities that may arise throughout the year.

Timing:  January - April (pantry) and On-going (for other needs that may arise)

Contact:  Pam Nadler kpnadler24@gmail.com

 


TABLE TO TABLE; Bag a Lunch and Help a Bunch  

A community-based food rescue program that collects prepared and perishable food that would otherwise be wasted and delivers it to organizations that serve the hungry in Bergen, Hudson, Essex and Passaic counties. This fresh food is delivered free of charge to more than 50 agencies throughout the area, including elder care facilities, drug rehab centers, homeless shelters, homes for victims of domestic violence, HIV day centers, and pantries serving the "working poor."  Families donate what they would normally spend on lunch for one day, or families can certainly donate more. The money is then put in a paper bag and sealed. All the money raised goes directly to help feed those who need it most— hungry friends and neighbors right here in northern New Jersey. 

Volunteer Opportunities:  A GW 7th grade team of volunteers will hang posters, make announcements, provide information, promote the event, and distribute and collect the bags.

Timing:  October

Contact: Mr. Monahan and Dr. Melucci at GWMS to volunteer during school hours in early October at mmonahan@ridgewood.k12.nj.us and mmelucci@ridgewood.k12.nj.us.  

 


THE YMCA 

We're for youth development, healthy living and social responsibility.  We also offer free membership for all 7th grade students.

Volunteer Opportunities:  
Food Distribution: Volunteers for The Ridgewood YMCA food distribution help load perishable and non-perishable food into the cars of our community members.  We package items and work as a team to get over 100 families their distribution in an hours time frame.  We ask the volunteers to help clean up as well, crushing boxes and making sure the space is clean before we leave for the day.

Timing:  weekly on Tuesdays from 3:00pm-4:00pm

Location:  112 Oak St., Ridgewood

Contact:  Megan Heller at mheller@ridgewoodymca.org  and Deyanara Gonzalez at dgonzalez@ridgewoodymca.org



West Bergen Mental Health

West Bergen Mental Healthcare was founded in 1963 as a Child Guidance Clinic.   As community needs grew, West Bergen expanded into a full-range mental health center serving thousands of children, adults and families every year.  West Bergen also runs 5 group homes for chronically mentally ill adults in Ridgewood, Ramsey, Mahwah and Midland Park.

 Volunteer Opportunities:

·         Help and support special activities and events for our group home residents.   Includes cooking and serving special meals (would take place at our offices in Ridgewood) and helping with fun special events like art classes, karaoke, bingo and game day for our group home residents.·          

Timing: Varies. Most events are held weekdays in the early afternoon.

Location:  120 Chestnut Street, Ridgewood

Contact:  Chrissie Lijoi (clijoi@westbergen.org)