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September 19, 2017
At United Way of Larimer County volunteering is a big part of what we do! United Way of Larimer County offers the Volunteer Project Leader (VPL) program to anyone interested in being trained to work directly with local nonprofit organizations to plan a one-time volunteer project. Volunteer Project Leaders work with the nonprofit organizations to assist with recruiting volunteers, soliciting supplies and materials, and coordinating the day’s events. We greatly appreciate our volunteers and the work they do in our community.
Our Volunteer Project Leader program is one of the ways people get involved. This program is tied in with Make A Difference Day in October and National Volunteer Month in April each year. This year for Make A Difference Day, we are going to follow a few Volunteer Project Leaders through the process of leading a project.
Earlier this month we met Kaytlyn and Zach our VPL couple working together. Our second VPL is Melanie. Melanie really enjoys volunteering and this year she will be leading a project for the WOLF sanctuary. Read more about Melanie and her views on the Volunteer Project Leader program.
One of the missions of the Young Employee Network at Hewlett Packard Enterprise in Fort Collins is to facilitate ways for employees to take advantage of their company supported volunteering hours, as well as give back to the community we live & work in. In the past, we have really enjoyed being involved in Make a Difference Day projects, including covering up graffiti and helping with the Harry Potter Halloween party. Signing up to be a VPL was a great opportunity for me and YEN [Young Employee Network] to bring people together to give back to the community that has given so much to HPE [Hewlett Packard Enterprise].
As an individual it is easy to feel powerless when confronted with the amount of need in the world and the difficulties that come with making a difference on a grand scale. Volunteering is important because as individuals coming together and contributing, even a little time, our effort compounds and makes large scale change happen. For that reason, dedicating time to help out a good cause is one of the best gifts we, as change agents, can give – even if it feels small in the grand scheme of things. It is also important to acknowledge that there is real need and ways to help out right here in our community. That’s one of the reasons I love how important Make a Difference day is in Larimer County – it really demonstrates how as a team, we can making a big difference for our neighbors and environment right here in Northern Colorado!
At HPE [Hewlett Packard Enterprise] I’m a Program Manager and Scrum Master in the Hyper Converged Infrastructure group, as well as Philanthropy Chair for the Young Employee Network. When I’m not at work, I enjoy volunteering as shelter support at Crossroads Safehouse, anything active and outdoors – Hiking, Rock Climbing, Running, Yoga, Circuit Training, Scuba Diving, spending time with friends, attending concerts, and cooking/nutrition. I’m passionate about learning, connecting with others, spirituality, and continuous self-improvement.
I’ll admit that I am not very familiar with the WOLF Sanctuary, but it is different than many of the organizations that are involved in Make a Difference Day projects so we are looking forward to trying something new! The group is really looking forward to learning more about the agency and visiting the premises!
We can’t wait! We are excited to help build the new enclosure and that it will be such a hands-on project. There is not much more satisfying than putting in physical hard work and having something to show for it at the end of the day!
After the training I feel really energized and excited! I am always amazed by the amount of generosity in this community. Getting to see the leaders of local organizations and meeting fellow VPLs was a privilege.
Be sure to “Follow the Leaders” the next few months and watch how they make a difference in our community and the rewards and benefits of being a Volunteer Project Leader! Although, Volunteer Project Leader applications are now closed, you can contact Beth Bunde at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
You can still be a part of Make A Difference day by volunteering for a Make A Difference Day project. Take a look at available projects in your community and register to volunteer for a project that appeals to your interests.
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