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2010 Be More Award Nominees

Be More Awards logo 2010

The nominations are in...

WE LOVE OUR BLOOMINGTON VOLUNTEERS! The following 83 nominees submitted for the 2010 Be More Awards are all examples of the inspiring stories and achievements of volunteers throughout our community.

Come celebrate these outstanding nominees and the spirit of volunteerism in our community at the 2010 Be More Awards Celebration at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 27, 2010.


Michelle Arthur

Area 10 Agency on Aging

Michelle Arthur stands out as an example of a remarkably dedicated volunteer at Area 10 Agency on Aging. For five years, five days a week, and two hours a day, she has helped make the nutrition services program possible at Cambridge Square Apartments. Every day, Michelle prepares 38 bags for hot meal delivery, helps deliver meals in the building, and makes coffee for home delivery volunteers. She also aids in cleaning up after meals have been prepared by taking charge of the store room, helping to set up tables for servings, and communicating supply orders to site coordinators. Michelle says she volunteers mostly because she sees a need to help the seniors around her. Michelle's extreme dependability, thousands of hours of service, and thousands of meals served set her apart as an outstanding volunteer for our Bloomington seniors.

Neville Batiwalla

BMA_Batiwalla_Neville2 Volunteers for Change

Neville Batiwalla, IU Student Liaison, has been an integral board member of Volunteers for Change (VFC) since its inception a year ago. One of Neville's greatest contributions has been building relationships through his involvement in IU campus groups and events, VFC, and the Bloomington community in general. Neville also participates in VFC's Food Campaign, often going door to door with fellow students (that he recruits) and collecting food and money for Hoosier Hills Food Bank. He also initiated VFC's Green Campaign, identifying student waste as an issue and encouraging VFC to help IU collect re-usable items during student move out. Throughout the summer of 2009, Neville helped the St. Vincent de Paul Society collect usable student cast-offs, and he currently participates in a city-university-community collaboration to address the issue of student waste. Overall, Neville is continuously finding ways to build a stronger community.

Lucille Bertuccio

BMA_Bertuccio_Lucille WFHB-Ecoreport

Lucille Bertuccio is the originator and producer of "EcoReport," a weekly radio program on WFHB that addresses environmental and ecological issues. Since the program first aired two years ago, Lucille supervised a raft of other volunteers, attracted interesting guests, and recruited, trained, and mentored new writers, editors, and hosts. Lucille is also a central member of the Design and Sustainability Committee for Mt. Gilead Friends Retreat, where she presents a variety of workshops (edible wild plants, worm-box composting, and wildflower identification) and hikes. She even found an endangered flower on Mt. Gilead's land and helped certify the land as a Wildlife Habitat. Lucille is active in several environmentally-focused initiatives like the Community Bike Program, the Southern Indiana Renewable Energy Network (SIREN), the Grow Organic Educators Series, the Bryan Park Creek Restoration, the Bioneers Conference, B-TOP (Bloomington Transportation Options for People), the Organic Growers Association, the Center for Sustainable Living, and the Community Wildlife Habitat.

Bobbi Boos

BMA_Boos_Bobbi Local Growers Guild

Bobbi Boos has worked for over five years to grow the Local Growers Guild, an organization that promotes local food choices, access, and production in order to decrease the carbon foot print of food consumption and increase the health of community members. Bobbi is passionate about environmental health, local economies, and providing access to high quality food for everyone. As a farmer, she works toward developing healthy foods and organic growing methods. Bobbi makes continuous efforts to educate and empower community members of all ages to collaborate and create an equitable Bloomington. In doing so, she is a longtime volunteer at Harmony School instilling her values of sustainability in the next generation. Bobbi has also accomplished cooperation amongst small farms in southern Indiana with the idea that they would be more successful working together and supporting one another. Bobbi is a versatile volunteer and a tireless advocate for local food security.

Ruthann Bucksot

BMA_Buckshot_Ruthann_RSVP Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (Area 10 Agency on Aging)

When a senior needing help walks into Area 10 Agency on Aging, the first face he or she often sees is Ruthann Bucksot's. Ruthann has served every Monday and Friday for four years as receptionist for Area 10's Retired and Senior Volunteer Program. She volunteered 122 hours in one month alone, organizing mail, answering phones, and completing projects for staff members. Ruthann also helps with the 2-1-1 Info Link, a three digit dialing code that people of all ages can call for information and referrals to health and human services. Since its inception in 2006, 15,000 callers in Monroe and Owen counties have received help using the info link. Ruthann not only puts in extra hours, but she does so with a great sense of humor. She is an example of a volunteer who consistently goes above and beyond to help the staff and seniors in the community.

Judy Carl

BMA_Carl_Judy_RSVP Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (Area 10 Agency on Aging)

As technology continues to advance quickly, our local seniors at Area 10 Agency on Aging are fortunate to have the help of Judy Carl. Judy has volunteered through the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program as a computer tutor 3 hours a week for 13 years. She teaches seniors how to operate computer programs like Microsoft Word, how to set up e-mail accounts in order to stay in touch with loved ones, and how to browse the Internet. In addition, Judy has volunteered with America Reads for 11 years, a program that matches senior volunteers with students. Judy and her family met with a student, Mai Ling, at least once a week to help improve her English skills by going to dinner and various community events. Mai has returned to China, and Judy and her family still Skype her twice a week. According to Judy, she is family.

Hermine Cohen Navarrete

Shalom Community Center

Hermine Cohen-Navarrete is eager to further Shalom Community Center's mission through her work as both a hospitality and Job Links volunteer. She greets guests with cheerful smiles and kind words as she searches for their mail, signs them up to see a caseworker, and helps orient them to the Shalom surroundings. Hermine also helps a number of people prepare resumés and search for gainful employment, which in economic times like these is invaluable assistance. Through her simple kindness as a hospitality volunteer, Hermine has impacted hundreds of people experiencing homelessness and poverty.

Patty Curry

BMA_Curry_Patty_MCUM Monroe County United Ministries (MCUM)

Since September of 2002, Patty Curry has been volunteering her time reading children's stories to Monroe County United Ministries' (MCUM) childcare students. By reading each Thursday, Patty introduces and emphasizes the importance of literacy and the enjoyment of literature. Some of the youth at MCUM, who may not have adult role models, look to Patty who acts consistently and selflessly to show them she cares. Children look forward to seeing her each week and hearing the stories she presents. Patty inspires and encourages generations of MCUM students, making an immeasurable impact through the simple act of reading.

Tara Darcy-Hall

BMA_Darcy-Hall_Tara_BABS Bloomington Area Birth Services

In January 2006, Tara Darcy-Hall and her husband Spencer Hall walked into one of the Bloomington Area Birth Services (BABS) childbirth classes. BABS gets a lot of sweet couples and didn't think much of it. Little did they know, Tara would become one of BABS' most effective Board members and President. Under Tara's watch, BABS' operating budget has grown from just over $6,000 to more than $300,000. In 2009, Tara led the BABS Board in their first annual fundraising gala, developing their skills at cultivating donors. Their efforts resulted in a 500% increase in overall contributions and fundraising income since 2007. Tara has helped to double the number of Board of Directors and to create a vision for BABS to continue to serve expectant parents and families by establishing a birth center. Tara has re-defined the role of Board President for BABS, providing clear leadership and the ability to assume a supporting role.

Colin Diersing

BMA_Diersing_Colin_Vol for Change2 Volunteers for Change

Colin Diersing was part of the founding group that envisioned Volunteers for Change's (VFC) current configuration, and helped formulate the bylaws. Colin is actively involved in VFC's Food Campaign, organizing neighborhood food drives for Hoosier Hills Food Bank (HHFB), coordinating volunteers and managing publicity and promotion. In 2009, Colin helped VFC collect more than 7,000 pounds of food and more than $6,400 for HHFB. Colin not only energizes VFC, but he also provides hope for the future through his extraordinary character. He significantly contributes to board meetings and attends to details and completes tasks independently. Colin is both a leader and team player who forges community connections by encouraging volunteerism amongst high schoolers and nurturing relationships.

Dave Everton

BMA_Everton_Dave City of Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department

Dave Everton ranks among the top 5 volunteers for the Climbing Club, Adopt-a-Trail, Leonard Springs Nature Day, and the Hockey Initiation program. Currently serving as President of the Indiana Cave Survey, he enjoys cave exploration, surveying, photography, and introducing others to safe and enjoyable caving. Aside from caving, Dave is also a rock climber and a hockey player who displays strong communication skills with participants of all skill levels. He is known for showing tremendous amounts of enthusiasm as a fabulous instructor. Dave facilitated the Karst station at Leonard Springs Nature Day for the past three years, which gives students a look into the importance of protecting caves, sinkholes and springs around the South-Central Indiana area. Dave is, above all, a knowledgeable volunteer with a keen ability to get kids excited and interested in caves.

Lorraine Farrell

BMA_Farrell_Lorraine_CASA Monroe County Court Appointed Special Advocates, Inc. (CASA)

Lorraine Farrell has worked tirelessly on behalf of the children of Monroe County for twelve years through Monroe County's CASA program. Not much needs to be said about the need to advocate for abused and neglected children, and Lorraine is the voice and champion for abused and neglected children when they need it most. Her strong work ethic has made her a force to be reckoned with as her dedication is followed by unusual dignity. She shares the special gift of being able to get close to families yet retain objectivity. Most of all, Lorraine has given Bloomington the gift of hope with her example.

Gilbert Fey

BMA_Fey_Gilbert_Bell Trace Bell Trace Health & Living Center

Gilbert "Gil" Fey elevates and inspires those around him at the Bell Trace Health and Living center. He assists in bingo, sits by the fire side with residents who need companionship, and dedicates his energy to improving the overall wellbeing of residents. Gil shows up every day with a slight smile and a reassuring calm reminding others that neither strength nor kindness needs to be loud or boastful. He is quick with a joke and has developed a comfortable rapport with the most introverted residents. Each day, Gil ensures that residents receive prompt and personable service as he passes out cold drinks along with witty commentary.

Ruth Fey

BMA_Fey_Ruth_PetsAlive PetsALIVE Spay/Neuter Clinic

Ms. Ruth Fey has been a phenomenal volunteer with Petsalive Spay/ Neuter Clinic for over three years. Each week, she helps prepare surgical instruments and launder materials for surgery. Such tasks can become fairly repetitious and tend to be tedious, but, at the age of 73, Ruth enthusiastically takes on the challenge with a smile. She generates a positive atmosphere for the surgical staff and is a wonderful support for animals recovering from surgery. Ruth's careful attention to detail and willingness to relieve clinic staff for breaks, has drastically increased the surgery flow of the clinic. Her service has touched several lives, making thousands of surgeries possible. Ruth uplifts the spirits of all she comes into contact with, making the Petsalive Spay/ Neuter Clinic more enjoyable.

William "Cody" Fluke

BMA_Fluke_Cody_BBBS Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Central Indiana

William "Cody" Fluke has been a High School (teenaged) "Big" at Edgewood Primary School for two years. Cody meets his Little Brother for an hour each week to help with school work, play games, read, visit the playground, and establish a one-to-one mentoring relationship. Cody is proactive in communicating meeting times with his "Little's" teacher. Most of all, Cody is caring, providing the gentle and consistent support his Little Brother needs. When Cody's Little Brother was asked if he had any questions about their relationship his response was, "Can he come two times a week instead of one?" Cody has proven himself to be a young man who goes above and beyond his commitment. He heads fundraising efforts for Edgewood's "Bowl for Kids Sake," and is an active member of their Leadership Academy, Key Club, Student Council and Music Warehouse. In the words of Principal Dirk Ackerman, "Cody is the sharpest!"

Melanie Frank

Local Growers Guild

Melanie Frank's work with the Local Growers Guild (LGG) makes her worthy of the title "Exceptional Volunteer." She is reliable and professional, capable of working independently with little oversight from agency directors. LGG is a group that works to strengthen the local food system in south-central Indiana. Melanie's passion and enthusiasm for the cause fuel her leadership. She is involved in both the Local Growers Guide (a publication on buying local foods) and the Bloomington Winter Farmers' Market (BWFM). Melanie dedicates Saturday mornings at 7 a.m. to helping vendors lug 50 lb. coolers to the Harmony School. Then, she staffs the LGG table, providing useful information and resources to customers about how to access local foods in the community. And, finally, Melanie greets 60 Community Kitchen patrons, making the Farmers' Market shopping experience a smooth and enjoyable one for them. Melanie drives LGG with her contagious work ethic.

Bev Freese

BMA_Freese_Bev_PALS PALS

Beverly "Bev" Freeze is a two-year volunteer for People and Animal Learning Services, Inc. (PALS), a non-profit therapeutic horseback riding program serving community members with disabilities. She participates in weekly lessons as a side-walker and horse handler. Bev also volunteers as a stable manager, supervising roughly twenty to thirty volunteers daily. She ensures that everything runs smoothly behind the scenes. This includes: seeing that correct equipment (saddles, pads, surcingles and bridles) is set out before lessons and providing a final tack check before horses enter the arena. Bev also supervises daily horse care including grooming, cleaning stalls and measuring dietary supplements. Bev even volunteers to check on the horses when PALS is closed during breaks. Her comical spirit brings relief to the barn and her nurturing character (bringing homemade soup to all volunteers during the winter) is well appreciated.

Kristi Gibbs

BMA_Gibbs_Kristi_GlobalGifts Global Gifts

Kristi Gibbs has been with Global Gifts since it opened in August 2010, serving impoverished artisans and producers by promoting and selling fair trade products. She is a competent and enthusiastic volunteer who enjoys taking initiative to strengthen the organization. Kristi is charged with sharing the stories of fair trade artisans across the world with customers. She is talented with the ability to be warm and welcoming while communicating fair trade with people of diverse backgrounds. Kristi has become a central Global Gift's volunteer, who opens and closes, helping to train new volunteers and teaching staff how to promote fair trade more efficiently. For some groups, like the Imani Workshop in Kenya that employs HIV positive women, Global Gifts is the only store promoting their products. Therefore, Kristi's sharing of their stories impacts the world, while persuading Bloomingtonians to think about their consumer choices and purchasing power.

Cheri Glaser

BMA_Glaser_Cheri Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County ReStore

Cheri Glaser has been a Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County volunteer since 2003. Growing up with an architect father as well as her experience as a potter, provided a way for Cheri to meet the need for shelter through an artistic perspective. Cheri's work exemplifies her belief in serving others and giving back. Her contribution is most apparent, however, at the ReStore. Cheri helped open the store in 2004, and has been greeting customers, stocking shelves, and working the register ever since. She even helped the store move to its current location on West 11th Street. Cheri tackled the task of making the new space workable for donors and customers by offering her insight, suggestions, and hugs. Her role has enabled the ReStore to further eliminate poverty housing in Monroe County. Cheri has been a faithful volunteer through every change and transition, providing invaluable commitment to Habitat and the Restore.

Kathryn Goodwin

Bloomington Area Birth Services

Indiana University senior Kathryn Goodwin began volunteering at Bloomington Area Birth Services (BABS) in 2008. Her passion for her studies (as a Human Development/Family Studies major) directly translates into her desire to be active with expectant parents and families in Bloomington. Kathryn volunteers weekly, ready and willing to help with any special programs or events that pop up. On top of a busy academic schedule and her work as an Advocate for Community Engagement with Templeton Elementary, Kathryn was instrumental in both planning Bloomington's first Baby Fair and BABS' relocation in Fall of 2009. Her concern for families and children is ever-present as she often comes in inquiring about ways to promote breastfeeding among teen mothers and ways to connect families without insurance to community resources. Kathryn is a remarkable volunteer who supports the BABS mission steadfastly.

Karen Hahn

BMA_Hahn_Karen_GlobalGifts Global Gifts

Karen Hahn has volunteered with Global Gifts since it opened in August 2010. Three to four times a month (multiple times per week during the holidays), Karen spreads her infectious enthusiasm and good nature with Global Gifts. She opens and closes the store, helps train new volunteers, and is a dependable fair trade ambassador to the community. Karen also shares the testimonies of fair trade artisans across the world to Global Gifts customers. This act of service has impacted both the local community and the world (in Eldoret, Kenya). Karen also works with kids at the IU Children's Center, where her love for sharing about other cultures and educating people about the world and fair trade is evident. Karen applies passion and care to everything she does.

Gail Hale

BMA_Hale_Gail_Lotus Lotus Education & Arts Foundation

Gail Hayer Hale is a long-time Bloomington artist, educator, and arts advocate. Her years of volunteer work with community organizations such as the Area 10 Agency on Aging and the Mathers Museum of World Cultures has provided opportunities for people to participate in the experience of creating quality works of art. Her services enable thousands of people to experience world cultures. Gail has dedicated 10 years to the Lotus Education and Arts Foundation and is instrumental in creating large-scale pole banners which are the signposts of the Lotus Festival. She was a key member of a group of artists who designed and created the series of dramatic stage backdrops currently used at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater.

Jennifer Hart

BMA_Hart_Jen_Habitat Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County

Jennifer Hart is a completely holistic volunteer for Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County. Habitat depends on crew leaders (volunteers who teach more than 1000 unskilled individuals on Habitat build sites each year) to help make home constructions possible. Jennifer recognized the need for more crew leaders in order to eliminate poverty housing in Monroe County. So, she became a member of the solution, completing the training herself. Seven years later, Jennifer has mentored and consulted with countless volunteers in construction skills while leading build crews for Habitat. Jennifer also spends hours meeting with staff members to revamp the curriculum and recruitment process. She also donates to Habitat's More Than Houses Society, pledging at least $1,000 per year for a minimum of five years. Jennifer Hart's service to Habitat helped raise more than $100,000 for the nine day Women Build event in 2009.

Jim Hettmer

BMA_Hettmer_Jim_BPP Bloomington Playwrights Project

In the arts world, Jim Hettmer is worthy of a cape and a secret identity, as he is the Bloomington Playwrights Project's superhero of volunteerism. Jim participates in Ensemble of Artist planning meetings, donates personal tools to the work room, renovated the lobby stage (a project that was both difficult and painful), and designed and built a brand new lighting and sound booth for the project. The judge of Jim's impact is measured not by the number of people he interacts with, but rather the quality and dedication he offers. The BPP could not operate at the level it currently does without him.

Hana Johnson

BMA_Johnson_Hana_MiddleWay2 Middle Way House Inc/The Rise

Hana Johnson has been volunteering at the Middle Way House and the Rise every Monday for a year. Along with a warm spirit, she possesses a quiet strength that represents her strong devotion to helping those she serves, while presenting them with comfort and encouragement. Through the Middle Way House's Crisis Line, Hana provides information, referrals, and empowerment to callers. She offers non-judgmental support and educates callers on the dynamics of domestic violence, helping create safety plans. Hana serves as a receptionist for the Rise, respectfully and kindly interacting with residents. She also volunteers in the Share Store where household items are donated, creating an enjoyable boutique like area for women to "shop". There have been times when five or six boxes of clothes were waiting to be sorted and hung up when she arrived. But, one of the most wonderful aspects of Hana's work ethic is that she never complains!

Blair Johnson

BMA_Johnson_Blair_Shalom Shalom Community Center

Blair Johnson has been an essential part of the Shalom Community Center's HELP Legal Clinic since the very beginning. Drawing upon his unique skill set as a law student at the Maurer School of Law, he has helped develop clinic procedures, worked tirelessly in community outreach, and been of terrific assistance to countless guests. Blair's volunteer hours have ranged from 15-30 hours every week for almost 2 years, now totaling more than 1000. This is even more impressive considering his law school obligations and other philanthropic commitments. Blair is also passionately involved in the Inter-Faith Winter Shelter program. The impact Blair Johnson has had in the lives of Bloomington's most vulnerable citizens is immeasurable.

Karla Kamstra

BMA_Kamstra_Karla_PetsAlive1 Petsalive Spay/Neuter Clinic

Karla Kamstra has been a community leader for years, and co-founded PetsALIVE in 2002. Since jumping into the crazy world of animal welfare, she has dedicated her life to this ministry spending the good majority of her days and nights on the demanding duties of an active Board President. Karla has the ultimate vision of ending the everyday cruelty of pet overpopulation. Day and night, Karla is writing and composing plans and procedures for the future of Petsalive. Her passion and compassion have reached hundreds within our community, and thousands across Indiana. Without Karla Kamstra, Petsalive would not exist. She has shown us all that life can be what you make it, that you can be the one to make a difference...and that you CAN BE MORE.

Lily Kinder

BMA_Kinder_Lily_BestBuddies Best Buddies Indiana

A club member since 2007, Lily Kinder stepped up to the plate to lead the Bloomington High School North Best Buddies chapter in the summer of 2009. She has been matched with her Buddy Zach for the past three years and has exemplified the mission of Best Buddies, promoting social inclusion through one-to-one friendships between people with intellectual disabilities and people without disabilities. Not only does she lead the chapter, but she can usually be seen hanging out with Zach at the mall, bowling, or heading over to visit their former elementary school teachers. Lily has hopes to be a Special Education teacher. With her drive and passion for working with people with disabilities this will be an easily attainable goal for her.

Lisa Liford-Brown

BMA_Brown_Liford_Lisa_Family Readiness American Legion Auxiliary Unit #18

Lisa Liford Brown has dedicated 46 years to the American Legion Auxiliary in leadership positions, including three terms as President. She also held various Department (state level) positions such as Junior Chairman, Knightstown Home, Memorial Foundation Chairman, Auxiliary Emergency Fund Chairman, and Poppy Chairman. She currently serves as the Department's Americanism Chairman, which requires a strong leader, like Lisa, who can mentor, guide and direct its members. She gives countless hours of her time and heart to this organization, providing fellow volunteers with hope that tomorrow's dream can come true.

Jennifer Lloyd

BMA_Lloyd_Jennifer_Circles Monroe County Circles Initiative

Jennifer Lloyd has faithfully served the Circles Initiative in an unselfish and wonderfully loyal way. On the fourth Thursday of each month Jennifer Lloyd organizes volunteers from her church community at Trinity Episcopal Church to prepare dinner for 50+ of our Circles Community members. Each month she takes the initiative to plan the meal, recruit enthusiastic volunteers, and organize the serving and clean up after the meal. Jennifer and her church community originally committed to volunteering for a year, but have continued to serve for what has now become 18 months. Because of the faithful service of Jennifer Lloyd, Circles can empower people to make plans and put them into action. These plans enable Circle Leaders to increase their resources, transition out of poverty, and gain a more stable economic status. Jennifer's dedication has made it very clear that she really cares about doing her part to help end poverty in Monroe County.

Katie Mann

BMA_Mann_Katie_PALS People and Animal Learning Services (PALS)

Katie Mann has volunteered with the PALS Program for the last 3 years. She is the first to arrive for her shift and the last to leave. When Katie is in the barn, we all rest assured that necessary things will be done but most importantly we know that our wonderful, deserving clients will be well taken care of, will enjoy their rides and will be safe. She is an expert horse handler which makes her invaluable to PALS. The PALS clients seem to sense Katie's ability and feel comfortable with her. She gives them confidence to ride because she is there. We literally could not provide services without people like Katie.

Chelsea May

BMA_May_Chelsea_Sweet Repeats Sweet Repeats

Miss Chelsea May has been a breath of fresh air at the Sweet Repeats resale boutique, benefiting Petsalive Spay/Neuter Clinic. When Chelsea walks in the door we hear our president, Karla, squeeze out a sigh of relief! She has proven to us time and time again that she is dedicated, hard working, and motivated to do whatever is needed. Chelsea is so incredibly dedicated to helping our cause that if by chance she has no way of getting to us she WALKS to the store after school! Even in freezing weather and snow! Volunteer service such as Chelsea's was absolutely necessary for the survival of our store. Chelsea did everything she could to help us remain open, assisting in our move over the holidays, coming in to unpack after the move, organizing the new office spaces...you name it, Chelsea was there doing it.

Marcia Meyer

BMA_Meyer_Chris_MCUM City of Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department

Volunteering is a way of life for Marcia Meyer, who completed 5 years of saving wages in order to be an "on-call" volunteer for agencies that needed her. Marcia returned to Bloomington 2 years ago with an interest in sustainable agriculture and small farms, which inspired her to volunteer with the Bloomington Community Farmers' Market. Along with her service, she brings intentionality, remarkable skills, enthusiasm and a genuine interest in people. She enjoys the positive environment created by dedicated staff members of the Market. Marcia says that whenever she volunteers there, she just can't stop smiling.

Chris Meyer

BMA_Meyer_Chris_MCUM Monroe County United Ministries

Chris Meyer has been volunteering in Monroe County United Ministries' (MCUM) emergency food pantry as a food bagger, bagging up food for distribution to clients. Chris is passionate about the work he does at MCUM. By helping to keep MCUM's shelves stocked with ready-to-go packages, he is increasing our caseworkers' abilities to see more clients and helping to provide about 300 clients each month with food. Chris' biggest impact can be seen in the "personal time" he devotes to MCUM. He can often be seen at MCUM even when school is not in session, and was a regular volunteer throughout the school's Winter Break.

Lori Miller

BMA_Miller_Lori_Shalom Shalom Community Center

Lori is truly a dedicated volunteer, even coming in during a snow storm when others were too timid to venture out. She does all the bookkeeping, including payroll, paying bills, making bank deposits, tax documentation, etc. She puts in long hours, averaging 35-40 hours a month for 4 years now, to get the job done. Many not-for-profit agencies pay a bookkeeper, but Lori generously gives of her time to such a valuable task so that we can save those dollars for direct service to Shalom guests.

Sarah Morris

District 10 Pro Bono Project, Inc.

Sarah began at District 10 Pro Bono as a first year law student, interviewing clients to determine their legal problems, and she has advanced to representing people in court, even though she's still a student. She does guardianships for the elderly and disabled, family law for abused women and children, and consumer law for people who have been taken advantage of. Sarah is also a weekly volunteer for the program, Lawyers in the Library, a walk-in clinic at the Monroe County Public Library. During LITL, she advises people, and in some cases, does legal work on the spot, such as guardianship paperwork, that would cost $500 to $1,000 at a private attorney's office. This work is not always easy nor does it always produce a helper's high. Most of our volunteers are good, committed people, but Sarah is extraordinary in that she does so much. And she'll do anything that's necessary.

Lisa Morrison

BMA_Morrison_Lisa_Tibetan Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center

The Tibetan Mongolian Buddhist Cultural Center (TMBCC) has been, since 1979, a hub and a center for Tibetan and Buddhist cultural activities in the United States and western world. Lisa Morrison's volunteer work with the Cultural Center has focused on community outreach, repositioning the image of the Center and event planning. She volunteers in a support capacity with the Director of the Center, Arjia Rinpoche, serving as the Director of Media and Public Relations. Morrison's work, overall, for the TMBCC, for the Bloomington area, and it's various non-for-profit organizations has enriched the lives of the community, the nation, and the world at large. It is an outstanding rarity to find an individual with the vast wealth of expertise and experience in the industry of marketing, media and promotions; let alone one who's willing to donate their invaluable services to the community and to humanity. Morrison's work has, and continues to be, above and beyond what is asked of a member of a community.

Robert Muldoon

BMA_Muldoon_Robert_StVincentDePaul St. Vincent de Paul Society-Bloomington Conference

At the age of 84, Robert (Bob) Muldoon continues to set a high standard for those who would serve others in our community through volunteering. Bob is currently in his fourth term as President of the St. Vincent de Paul Society since first joining SVdP in 1998. Bob has for years participated in SVdP home visits to those who ask for help, but his main service now is spending every Thursday morning at the Shalom Community Center, where he meets with clients, especially homeless clients, to see how the SVdP Society can help. He meets with 20 to 30 clients each week, and besides offering help with gasoline, bus tickets, rent deposits and the like, he drives clients to stores to help them get boots they may need to keep their feet warm in winter or to obtain the shoes and clothes they need for their jobs. Bob is a true friend and confidante to those who are trying to survive day by day.

Birdena Oakley

BMA_Oakley_Berdina_BAAC Bloomington Area Arts Council

Birdena serves actively as a reception, housekeeping, and gift shop volunteer, answering questions, and showing patrons around. She helps new volunteers adjust to the routines, basically helping to keep the Waldron running. She has impacted the community by doing her part to keep the arts alive. Shegenerously gives her time and skills as a longer-serving volunteer with the Bloomington Area Arts Council.

Brittney Paulk

Residential Programs and Services

Brittney Paulk, a Resident Assistant for Indiana University's Teter Quad, developed the "Adopt a Non-Profit" Program 15 months ago. Inspired by her experience working with non-profits a couple of summers ago as a Groups RA, "Adopt a Non-Profit" expanded to each of the 11 residence centers (impacting 10,000 students). She has coordinated the application process, served as liaison between the residence centers and their respective non-profit organizations, and provided programming/training for professionals and graduate student supervisors in RPS. Because of Brittany's passion, members of these centers have been inspired to assist non-profits throughout the Bloomington area.

Brittney Paulk

BMA_Paulk_Brittney_Groups Groups Student Support Services Program

One could say that Brittney Paulk stands for "Busy Person," whose concern for others transcends her own being. She has thrived in the environment of IU and of the local community. By touching the lives of many students and volunteers, she has left a large footprint to fill as she graduates in May. During the summer following Brittney's freshman year, she was hired as the first Community Events Organizer to get the new Groups class involved in volunteerism. Sophomore year, she chaired the campus organization of Big Brothers/Big Sisters, drawing volunteers from the entire campus with the force of her interest and enthusiasm. During senior year she innovated "Adopt a Non-Profit" with the eleven (11) residence centers at IUB. More than one hundred (100) Groups students have volunteered together in these activities and more than 15 places benefited from Brittney's organizational skills in just 5 short weeks.

Joe and Joyce Peden

BMA_Peden_Joe and Joyce Monroe County Children's Farm Festival

The Monroe County Children's Festival, more commonly referred to as the Peden Farm, has served the needs of thousands of grade school kids for nearly fifty (50) years. The grade school tours have continued through multiple generations of the Peden family. Joe and Joyce have dedicated their lives to farming and education in Monroe County. They continue to open their farm to children during the busiest time of the year, that being farming season. The Peden Farm experience is one of a kind in Monroe County utilizing over 275 volunteers every year to make it a success.

Dawna Petersen

BMA_Pederson_Dawna_MiddleWay Middle Way House

For more than 20 years, Dawna Petersen has provided crisis intervention services for women and children experiencing violence with the Middle Way House. Dawna is one of the founding volunteers of On-Scene Advocates, a 24/7 (weekends, evenings and holidays) crisis intervention program. For OSA, she answers phone calls from people in a range of situations including: those seeking safety from an abusive relationship, those experiencing sexual violence, and those who have a friend or loved one that is being hurt in an intimate relationship. Her passion for ending domestic and sexual violence has been an inspiration to fellow volunteers as her actions continuously remind others of the power of a calming voice and determined spirit.

Kristen Renzi

BMA_Renzi_Kristen_Middle Way Middle Way House

Kristen Renzi is a leader among the group of On-Scene Advocates (OSAs) at Middle Way House where she accompanies survivors to the hospital in crisis situations and responds to rape and abuse victims during her 15 hour on call shifts. Last year, OSAs responded to 86 domestic and sexual violence survivors at the hospital and 172 rape crisis calls from violence survivors and their supporters. The impact of Kristen's work not only leads to healing for rape and domestic violence survivors, it creates a ripple effect where others learn from her example and treat rape and domestic violence with more respect.

Sheryl Sabandal

BMA_Sandabal_Sheryl_Habitat Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County

Sheryl is the perfect type of volunteer: motivated, enthusisatic, and compasionate. She works alongside the Habitat partner families and understands the importance of making everyone feel comfortable on site, whether donating clothes to volunteers who come underdressed or by singing a song to break the silence. Sheryl has an incredible spirit and she has done more than she realizes for this affiliate in the brief time she has been volunteering here.

Lynn Schwartzberg

BMA_Schwartzberg_Lynn_Lotus Lotus Education & Arts Foundation

Lotus volunteer Lynn Schwartzberg has supervised the kitchen and service operations, coordinating a buffet for 100 people during the annual fundraiser, Edible Lotus, for seven years. Lynn also serves on the Bloomington Community Arts Commission and on the board of Buskirk-Chumley Theater Management. She volunteers for arts events throughout the year including Cardinal Stage productions, Tamara Loewenthal's Percussive Dance Extravaganza, and Buskirk-Chumley concerts. And, as a member of the Volunteer Steering Committee, Lynn is famous for surprising fellow volunteers with cupcakes and other sweets at group meetings.

David Shaw

BMA_Shaw_David_CASA Monroe County Court Appointed Special Advocate, Inc. (CASA)

David's perseverance as a Court Appointed Special Advocate for two children in the court system has made a real and lasting difference in their lives. For nearly two years, David has advocated for these children through the court system. At the final court hearing, Judge Galvin specifically thanked David for pushing the system on behalf of the children.

Michael Shermis

BMA_Shermis_Michael_Lotus Lotus Education & Arts Fondation

Michael Shermis builds organizations, teaching ways to sustain, grow wisely, and think strategically. He joined the board of LEAF as it was on the cusp of growth and maturity, and helped lead the organization through the development and adoption of employee policies, risk and fiscal management procedures, and strategic plans. He is also an ambassador for community work, strengthening the capacity of nonprofits. Michael devotes an enormous amount of time to helping organizations articulate their missions, establish governance, and strategize about the future. In addition, he supports other volunteers in the community as they become fellow leaders. Nonprofits benefitting from Michaels efforts include: •United Way •Stepping Stones •Serendipity Montessori School •Rhino's Youth Center •Amethyst House •Community Kitchen •Big Brothers/Big Sisters •Abilities Unlimited •Middle Way House •Giving Back to Africa •New Leaf/New Life •Tasmena (Dubai-based)

Novella Shuck

Bloomington Housing Authority

Novella Shuck helped in all stages of planning the annual Bloomington Housing Authority (BHA) client holiday party and gift drive. She composed letters and passed out flyers to promote the events. She recruited organizations to help purchase gifts for children, and ensured that more than 100 people received a Christmas meal and free gifts. While children waited to sit on Santa's lap, Novella cheerfully painted their faces. She exceeded the expectations of BHA, helping transform a class project into an event beneficial to many, many people with low-incomes. More importantly, Novella made Christmas a little brighter for each family that was helped.

Byron Smith

BMA_Smith_Byron_CCA Council for Community Accessibility

Byron Smith is an institution. He has spent the last 20+ years advocating tirelessly for disability-related issues. He helped steer the entire Bloomington community on a path to greater accessibility and diversity. He has worked with people of all ages to make them aware of disability issues and how obstacles can be overcome. He is often asked to speak about his own disability (blindness) to elementary school classes, where he engages the students in discussion, fields their questions, and provides each student with their name in braille. For many years, theatre was Byron's platform of choice. Under various names, culminating in the organization of Diversity Theatre, Byron wrote, produced and acted in humorous skits that presented disability issues to church groups, schools and other organizations.

Jan Turner

BMA_Turner_Jan_Wildcare WildCare Inc.

Jan Turner's service to WildCare can be summed up in one word: dedication. As a WildCare Team Leader responsible for all rodentia, foxes, and coyotes, Jan has answered many pages over the last 9 years. But her dedication does not stop there. She is a founding member of our organization and has served on the Board of Directors from the beginning. Last year, she also took the lead in co-coordinating a very important training session by the International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council. where community members are able to become certified in basic care, sponsored and hosted by WildCare. Jan has also personally made a world of difference to many of our wild neighbors. When Skylar, an Arctic Fox who is the by-product of the illegal trade of exotic animals, was left homeless and in danger of being euthanized, Jan agreed to open her home to take him in and saved his life. She also fosters baby animals at home, caring for them morning, noon and night.

Dr. Barbara Walker

BMA_Walker_Dr. Barbara Volunteers in Medicine

Dr. Barbara Walker, a Clinical Professor at the Indiana University Department of Psychology, has been an influential volunteer at VIM from its inception, providing countless hours contacting and recruiting professionals in the community about participating in our programs. Her involvement was the critical factor in the establishment of our clinic's Behavioral and Mental Health component. Dr. Walker is more than generous with her time and provides needed support for our staff and volunteers. She volunteers at the clinic on two days each week counseling patients and supervising students. She displays seemingly never-ending compassion and concern for our patients and she represents the true spirit of the culture of caring we strive to impart. Thanks to Dr. Walker's dedication and persistence VIM has had 1295 visits with 520 patients in our Behavioral Health Clinic.

Don Wendling

BMA_Wendling_Don_Habitat Habitat For Humanity

Don Wendling is truly an artist and for the past nine years he has created truly lasting masterpieces through Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County. No one takes this work to heart quite like Don. Don is always willing to work with and train new volunteers and future Habitat homeowners. Don's patient, good-humored, and modest demeanor make him a joy to work with and learn from. He helps volunteer crews and partner families navigate through the process of Habitat construction. When Don comes to build on one of the job sites, his smile, positive attitude, and tangible construction contributions always leave an impression on those present. Even though Don volunteers an estimated 60 hours a month to Habitat projects, the true measure of his service goes well beyond those hours. In addition to the time he spends on the job site, he invests countless additional hours of his own time at home in his personal workshop - custom-building window sills, porch railing trim, and whatever other items are needed to finish Habitat's houses under construction.

Nancy White

BMA_White_Nancy_Master Gardeners Monroe County Master Gardener Association

Nancy White currently serves as the President of the Monroe County Master Gardener Association, an organization which has been active in Monroe County for over 20 years and currently has a membership of 98 trained volunteers. She has attained the silver level of certification which requires a minimum of 500 volunteer hours and 75 hours of continuing education. Nancy is a Master Gardener who fits the program motto of Helping Others Grow. Nancy is willing not only to serve as a leader but also to put in the hard physical work that a Master Gardener volunteer sharing horticulture knowledge with the community sometimes requires. Nancy has a wonderful community spirit and is willing to put that spirit to work to improve the place we all call home.

Dan Withered

BMA_Withered_Dan_MCCSC Adult Ed2 MCCSC Adult Education

As a tutor for adult learners, Dan has found it very rewarding to be able to help people in achieving their goals. It's been especially satisfying to him to help them come to an understanding of a problem or concept they were having trouble with. Students Dan has worked with speak of his patience, his easy manner, his knowledge and his focus. Over the past year, counting his "regulars" and others he has worked with, probably 25 or 30 people have come away the better for having worked with him.

Art Woodruff, DVM

BMA_Woodfruff_Dr._Art_COB Animal Care and Control City of Bloomington Animal Care & Control

Since 2000, Dr. Art has been visiting the shelter on a weekly basis spending anywhere from one to two hours helping shelter animals who need him. While at the shelter, he examines animals, runs tests, makes diagnoses and prescribes treatments. He regularly sees 10 to 20 animals in one visit and is always patient and gentle with every animal he handles. Dr. Art donates his time to perform this service and greatly discounts his rates for the tests and supplies he provides to us. In addition to treating illnesses and injuries, Dr. Art has been an important partner in our transport programs. Every dog that leaves the state of Indiana on a transport program must travel with a health certificate issued by a veterinarian proving that they have passed a health exam and have a current rabies vaccination.

Van Young

BMA_Young_Van_PALS People and Animal Learning Services (PALS)

Van has been involved for five years as a sidewalker during lessons at People and Animals Learning Services (PALS), a non-profit therapeutic horseback riding program serving people with disabilities and at-risk youth in Bloomington. Even when Van is not scheduled to be at the barn, he makes himself available to substitute in lessons. He also helps out around the barn in a handyman capacity. Van helps the program by repairing equipment and maintaining the facility. His fix-it skills are a huge asset to our program and eliminate the need to hire outside assistance.

Margaret Joseph Zimmerman

BMA_Zimmerman_Margaret_Joseph_CASA Monroe County CASA, Inc.

As a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteer, Margaret Joseph Zimmerman advocates for and watches over abused and neglected children. Her service ensures children don't get lost in the overburdened legal and social service system or languish in an inappropriate group or foster home. Margaret is a diligent, thorough, fact-finder, making her an assertive advocate and competent report writer. She has been an active community volunteer for almost 30 years. In fact, she's spent more than 628 hours on her current case already. In the 40+ months Margaret has been involved, she has only missed one monthly visit with the children due to illness. Upon retiring from the State Department of Health, she applied her skills as an observer, interviewer, writer and speaker to being an advocate for children. Margaret is an intelligent, insightful, and humble person worthy of appreciation.

21st Century Scholar Corps

BMA_21stCenturyScholarCorps 21 Century Scholar Corps

The 21st Century Scholar Corps is an IU student organization established in January 2009 with the goal of engaging students with the campus and community while bringing students together in a collaborative environment. In just one year's time, 220 Scholar Corps members have completed more than 700 services hours. Last spring, roughly 25 students traveled to Spring Mill State Park in Mitchell, Indiana to prepare the pioneer village for tourist season. In celebration of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Scholar Corps members arranged welcome baskets for families in transitional housing through Middle Way House. Scholar Corps is currently working with the Youth Services Bureau of Monroe County (YSB) which provides temporary emergency housing for Monroe County youth. Many of the students have multiple commitments to school, work, and extracurricular activities. Despite these commitments, Scholar Corps students recognize the importance of giving back and engaging in the community.

Allison Lester & Matthew Brown

BMA_Brown_Matt_GlobalGifts BMA_Lester_Allison_GlobalGifts Global Gifts

Matthew Brown & Allison Lester are the dynamic college student duo at Global Gifts. They have become some of the most loyal and dependable volunteers, and certainly stood out amongst many IU students as special young people committed to promoting fair trade and making this world a better place. Since Global Gifts' opening in August, Matt and Allison have had a regular shift, volunteering in the store weekly. Matt has become a 'key' volunteer - supervising shifts, opening and closing the store, and solving problems that arise. Allison has been instrumental in increasing the amount of money sent back to the artisans who made items. Whether mending a slightly broken necklace or sculpture or brainstorming new ideas to promote fair trade, she's always on hand. Matt and Allison are delightful to be around, using their gifts and passion as Global Gifts volunteers.

Aurora High School Community Service Class

BMA_Aurora High School Class Habitat for Humanity of Monroe County ReStore

If the students of Aurora High School are the next generation, there's plenty of hope for the future! Social studies teacher Tim Fick has given his time, energy, and passion to provide the opportunity for students to develop their own spirit of volunteerism and altruism. Every Monday through Friday, students in Tim's Community Service / Habitat for Humanity class learn about the importance of being a positive and active member of the community. For two years, the class has walked to Habitat's ReStore every Thursday to clean, make repairs, and load merchandise. In less than an hour, the students complete tasks that would take all day to finish without their help. Through their service, ReStore can process donations faster and raise more money to support home builds. Tim Fick and his students inspire fellow volunteers, staff, and customers with consistent service that proves that regular volunteer programs help make communities better.

Bloomington Amateur Radio Club (BARC)

BMA_BARC_ray stevens Red Eye Relay

The Bloomington Amateur Radio Club (BARC) is an exceptional group of diverse individuals who have given countless hours of support to many different organizations and events. With more than 100 members, BARC supports local events such as the Hilly Hundred, Indiana Science Olympiad, Hoosier Hills Bike Tour, Coach Hep Indiana Cancer Challenge, Red Eye Relay, Kids Day at the Wonderlab, and Hamfest celebrations in southern Indiana. They serve an important role in Monroe County's Emergency Communications Plan: working with ARES (Amateur Radio Emergency Services) and RACES (Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service) to prepare a volunteer emergency communications plan for Monroe County. The 2009 Red Eye Relay had 240 participants and 50 volunteers that relied on BARC's support. BARC members are always available for the duration of this extremely long overnight event (up to 18 hours) which raises funds for the local school systems, as well as Harmony School. Volunteering for such an extended period, BARC members demonstrate their passion for helping others.

Bloomington Community Band

BMA_BloomingtonCommunityBand Bloomington Community Band

Since 1978, the BCB has provided hundreds of free concerts for countless people in Monroe and surrounding counties. The concert venues in 2009 included civic events (e.g., Memorial Day and Fourth of July celebrations) and five concerts in three area retirement homes (Meadowood, Bell Trace, and Redbud Hills). Of the approximately sixty members of the BCB, six have been with the band since its beginning in 1978. That the band members collectively have devoted so much of their time and lives to this endeavor through the years is astounding. What may be even more surprising is that over 700 musicians have played with the band since 1978. Clearly, the BCB has provided and will continue to provide a valuable outlet for amateur musicians to develop their musical talents and to enjoy making music in their adult lives.

Book Fair Committee

BMA_Book Fair Committee 2010_Am Red Cross American Red Cross - Monroe County Chapter

Members of the Book Fair Committee are essential to the Monroe County Chapter of the American Red Cross Book Fair, which has been making books affordable to families with constrained budgets since 1983. Last year alone, more than 6,000 visitors from Indiana and surrounding states attended the fair, netting record sales of over $70,803 (adding to the approximately $847,000 net to-date) and engaging 356 volunteers in service to their community. The Book Fair Committee is comprised of dedicated, passionate, longstanding volunteers who actively encourage student teachers, home-schoolers, other non-profits, and families throughout Monroe County to rely on the American Red Cross to meet their educational and organizational needs.

Caldwell Family: Patience, Joe, Bethany, Anastasia and Juliana Caldwell

BMA_CaldwellFamily_Circles Monroe County Circles Initiative

Patience and Joe Caldwell are the superglue that binds participants in our Monroe County Circles™ Initiative into a tightly cohesive and supportive group of friends. Though they have only been involved with Circles™ since last April, the volunteer spirit of Patience and Joe and their daughters, Bethany, Anastasia and Juliana, has been a great asset in advancing the Circles mission. Patience and Joe are also members of our Circles™ Guiding Coalition, where they serve on the Community Team (comparable to a Board committee), a group that ensures that a venue, volunteers, food and Youth Community curriculum plans are arranged for our weekly Circles™ meetings. The service of this family has impacted the lives of 12 Circle Leaders, and the children of each Circle Leader - besides easing the work of staff, Allies and other volunteers. The zeal with which the Caldwells perform volunteer tasks makes the family naturally wealthy in spirit and caring.

Calendar Team for Down Syndrome Family Connection

BMA_DownSyndromeCalendarTeam Down Syndrome Family Connection

As a working mother of 2 small children, Rosalie Founds is a charter member of the Board of Directors for the Down Syndrome Family Connection (DSFC). She has maintained successful outreach for DSFC by completing 27 photo shoots for the 2009 and 2010 calendars "Beautiful Faces, Extraordinary Lives," which features persons with Down syndrome in Bloomington and surrounding areas. Rosalie has been instrumental in planning various events over the last several years including the first and second annual Buddy Walks fundraiser, raising about $30,000, as well as the first annual Inspiring Abilities Resource Fair--the only resource fair of its kind in this area, bringing together over 25 agencies and organizations serving persons with disabilities.

Family Readiness Group

BMA_Family Readiness Group2 Second Battalion 150th Field Artillery

Providing a list of resources, a helping hand, a shoulder to cry on, and a positive outlet for energy, the Family Readiness Group is the glue that keeps the military and their families connected. This FRG has been the link for this community to connect with our National Guard soldiers and their families. This group provides a wealth of inspiration. The FRG strives to educate military families and service members about benefits and resources while providing family support, a communication network, and an agenda of activities to build cohesiveness.

Handyman Volunteer Group

BMA_HandymanGroup_Area10 Area 10 Agency on Aging

The Handyman Volunteer Group, founded 15 years ago, meets the needs of Monroe County seniors by building ramps and performing home repairs to make homes handicap accessible. Thanks to this group, seniors who use wheelchairs have the ability to visit the doctor, go shopping, and enjoy life. The cost of making house repairs or making a home handicap accessible is often too high for many seniors to afford. The Handyman Volunteer Group also fixes plumbing and sinks, repairs screens and windows, installs locks or grab bars, caulks around doors, and repairs unsafe wooden steps and floors free of charge. The group also visits seniors every Monday, establishing friendly relationships that inspire seniors to live up to their full potential.

J and J of Teachers Warehouse

BMA_JandJ_JamesJimGriffin_TeachersWarehouse BMA_JandJ_JanetSchell_TeachersWarehouse Teachers Warehouse

Janet Schell and Jim Griffin are distinguished volunteers at Teachers Warehouse (TW). They contribute a combined total of 36 hours per month volunteering. Janet is a retired elementary teacher and Jim has had a lifelong passion for education; together they bring expertise and enthusiasm to our mission of providing free school supplies and school resources to teachers K -8. Their specific duties include helping teachers in the retail store, stocking inventory, soliciting donations, and traveling across town to transport donated items back to TW. Since last fall, 472 individual teachers have shopped at TW. These teachers and their students are grateful to Janet and Jim for their efforts and dedication to TW.

Joseph Basile, Cade Chudy, Zoie Hightower, Caleb Kammel, Steven Hunt, Bethany Lumsdaine

BMA_Youth Group_GenosCafeteria Geno's Cafeteria at Backstreet Mission, Inc.

For the past two academic years Joseph Basile, Cade Chudy, Zoie Hightower, Caleb Kammel, Steven Hunt, and Bethany Lumsdaine have served lunch to an average of 50 people every Friday in Geno's Cafeteria Soup Kitchen at Backstreet Mission. These students sanitize dishes, clean freezers, prepare food, organize pantry shelves, take inventory, and carry trash and recycling to dumpsters. One of the beautiful benefits of working in a shelter is the chance to interact with people representing various lifestyles. By interacting face-to-face and working side by side, the students develop a love and acceptance for people from all walks of life. This is a truly remarkable group of middle and high school students, who recognize the value and mutual benefits of giving freely of their time and talents, to an often marginalized section of their community.

Laura Walter and Vince Stange

BMA_Stange_Vince_PACE BMA_Walter_Laura_PACE PACE at Bloomington High School South

Laura Walter and Vince Stange exemplify what it means to serve others. For the past year and a half, this team of Indiana University students who has tutored high school students twice a week in the Panthers Achieving Credits and Enrichment (PACE) program at Bloomington High School South. Whether a student needs help in algebra, literature or biology, Laura and Vince are right there to help. Laura and Vince are dependable volunteers who are truly dedicated to the work they do. They care about each and every student. Giving students their undivided attention, Laura and Vince make each student feel like the only person in the room. While at a place in their lives where it is easy to be self-absorbed and selfish, Laura and Vince embrace being contributing members of society.

National Honor Society at Bloomington High School South

PACE at Bloomington High School South

The Bloomington High School South National Honor Society have been active volunteers for the PACE program. Members come to PACE each week to help their fellow students. They tutor students in subjects such as Algebra, Geometry, Chemistry, Biology, Earth Space Science and English. The Honor Society puts students at ease with their non-judgmental demeanor. They make students feel capable of success. These members have shown students of diverse backgrounds, skill levels, and social groups the importance of unity. The Honor Society has a positive energy that is contagious. Their strong work ethic and dedication show throughout their service to fellow peers.

Ron and Joan Schoknecht

BMA_Schoknecht_Ron_Joan_MCUM Monroe County United Ministries

For more than ten years, Ron and Joan Schoknecht have acted as pinnacles in Monroe County United Ministries' (MCUM) Programs. Joan files MCUM's more than 300 client records each month, helps to make and package cookies for the Holiday Cookie sale, and assists in the daily needs of the office. Their work is often "behind the scenes" but is also very necessary for keeping MCUM's donors, staff, and clients informed, comfortable, and organized. Ron and Joan have made an indescribable impact on MCUM and the Bloomington community by helping to send out newsletters to thousands of individuals each month, and by keeping important records organized in the Emergency Services department. They also maintain the operation of furnaces and air conditioners that affect more than 100 staff, clients, and preschoolers. Joan and Ron serve without recognition and always with willing spirits.

St. Vincent de Paul Society, Bloomington Conference

Volunteers of the St. Vincent de Paul Society visit people who ask for help with rent or utilities, assess their situations and offer appropriate assistance (both material and spiritual). Members also collect donated furniture and distribute it to those in need without regard to religion, race, creed, color, or sexual orientation. Last year this group was able to grant 2490 requests for financial aid, 470 requests for furniture and 270 request for medical, grocery, and clothing needs. Overall, members provided approximately $228,600 worth of furniture and financial aid to clients. Most importantly, these volunteers strive to provide hope and support to those who struggle to make it through the week. They also serve as a resource for many agencies, such as Middle Way House and Martha's House, providing a model of enthusiasm and loyal dedication.

Students In Free Enterprise

BMA_Students In Free Enterprise_1 Students In Free Enterprise

Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) is an Indiana University-Bloomington student group dedicated to using positive, forward-thinking business practices to build a more sustainable world. SIFE does this by considering the relevant economic, social and environmental factors and asking how we can effectively empower people in need by applying business and economic concepts and an entrepreneurial approach to improve their quality of life. The state of Indiana is among the highest in bankruptcies and foreclosures. Thus, SIFE has a mission to start personal finance conversations early with Smart Cookie Banking, teaching the basics through fun and interaction. More than 400 students have gone through the program, learning the benefits of saving versus spending. SIFE supports 8 projects annually, averaging more than 1600 volunteer hours per year. This year's students came from more than 13 different majors, impacting nearly 1,000 community members with a multi-disciplinary effort.

Students Taking Active Roles Today (START)

BMA_START volunteers

Students Taking Active Roles Today (START) is an organization founded on the idea that students can and should be involved in their community in a meaningful way. START exists to provide opportunities for grad students, faculty, staff and undergraduate students to serve the Bloomington community by providing unique programs and community volunteering opportunities. START provides easily accessible service opportunities on IU's campus (Red Cross Blood Drives, and food drives). Members also advertise community volunteer needs in a variety of fashions including a regularly updated blog, e-mail, and fliers. START has successfully motivated 83 student participants to join their volunteer ranks out of a total student body of 441 (excluding staff, and undergrads). START benefits several organizations including: Mother Hubbard's Cupboard, Goodwill, Shalom Center, MiddleWay House, Salvation Army, Area 10 Agency on Aging, United Way, Girls Inc. and countless others. The students who make these efforts possible are exceptional.

The Green Team of The Woodlands

BMA_Green Team_TheWoodlands Winding Brook Homeowners Association

The Green Team (TGT) of the Woodlands encourages sustainable lifestyles through a balance of environmental, economic, and social concerns. In doing so, TGT researches related subjects and provides recommendations for the Winding Brook Homeowners Association board to implement. A long-range comprehensive plan has been developed, guiding priorities to address buildings and grounds, resident safety/quality of life, education and outreach. Among those plans are setting a "no dumping" policy, organizing Christmas tree pick-up, supplying picnic tables in green spaces, encouraging pitch-ins/cookouts, lemonade stands, etc. Other plans include supplying dog waste bags at green space entranceways and installing traffic-calming speed bumps. TGT volunteers exemplify hard work and dedication, guiding the Woodlands to transform a mono-culture into a diverse community, enriching both people and wildlife.

Tree of Life, Inc.

BMA_TreeoLife_Animal Shelter City of Bloomington Animal Care & Control

Tree of Life responded enthusiastically to helping the City of Bloomington Animal Care & Control Department provide food, shelter and medical care. The department handles approximately 4,800 animals per year, which includes sheltering strays, reuniting lost pets with owners and finding new homes for animals in need. Tree of Life generously made monthly deliveries of donated items. In 2009, members assisted over 580 households and distributed over 20,000 pounds of donated food. Some items, like canned foods and toys, are used at the Animal Shelter to enhance the quality of life for Shelter animals as they wait for new homes. The remainder of the donated items has been used to supply the pet food bank program. Through their donations, Tree of Life promotes the concept of sustainability by donating items to the Animal Shelter for community distribution. Tree of Life benefits residents, their pets and the shelter.

Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity

BMA_Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity The Salvation Army

The Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service has become synonymous with eye care for a select group of optometry students as they reach out to the low-income residents of Monroe County. This hard work is done by the 175 students of Volunteer Optometric Services to Humanity (VOSH) which is based in the IU School of Optometry. VOSH began a partnership two years ago with local agencies to encourage people with low incomes to visit their eye clinic. When patients arrive, they're often facing life-altering risks. VOSH students are trained to look for dangerous diseases: diabetes, glaucoma, macular degeneration and heart disease. Members also visit area elementary schools regularly, where they have interactive exhibits on eye care. The average pair of glasses costs $300 (approximately one month's rent on Section 8). VOSH fits the community's less fortunate with quality frames and custom fit lenses. VOSH students are gifted, making an impact and inspiring all.

The WonderLab Volunteer Team

BMA_WonderLabVolunteerPic3 WonderLab Museum

WonderLab is a case study of the power of volunteers. Last year 864 individuals donated more than 15,000 hours in many different capacities at WonderLab. These volunteers are passionate about what they do to contribute to the organization. The Wonderlab staff attests that the volunteers inspire and energize them. The volunteer team brings so many intangibles to the organization that they are recognized as the heart and soul of WonderLab. The face-to-face interaction of volunteer to visitor is essential to achieving WonderLab's goal of making science accessible and enjoyable to people of all ages. Quite simply, without volunteers WonderLab could not fulfill its mission.