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Volunteer with Parks and Recreation


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For more information on how you, your group or your business can become a volunteer, contact Nikki Wooten at 812-349-3739 or wootenn@bloomington.in.gov

Winter/Spring 2016 Volunteer Opportunities

ONE-DAY SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES

Healthy Valentine's Day
Friday, February 12
Celebrate health, family togetherness and Heart Month during a special Valentine's-themed evening.
Duties: Take part in a healthy Valentine's Day when you volunteer for this event! As a volunteer, you'll assist Bloomington Parks and Recreation staff with active games and encourage and assist participants in making heartfelt Valentines for someone they love!
Program Time: 5-8:30 p.m.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Banneker Community Center, 930 W. Seventh St.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 4
Click Here to Register


Cat in the Hat Seusspicious Behavior
Saturday, March 7
Don't sit at home with nothing to do!
Come to the library for a birthday woo-hoo.
It's Seusspicious Behavior, so the folks say
And we're celebrating Dr. Seuss's birthday.
Duties: Seuss-like volunteers are needed to assist with hands-on activities that include crafts and games. In addition, assist with setup and teardown of the event.
Program Time: 12-4:30 p.m.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Monroe County Public Library, 303 E. Kirkwood Ave.
Age of Volunteers: 16 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 10 Click Here to Register


Leonard Springs Nature Day
Tuesday, March 8
Volunteer to teach area sixth-grade students about our awesome natural heritage through multiple stations including karst, creeks, wetlands, and forests.
Duties: If you have an interest in the outdoors and enjoy working with children, sign up for our Leonard Springs Nature Days. Station facilitators and group leaders are needed.
Program Time: 9:15 a.m.-2 p.m.
Training: Online training sessions are available for review. Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Leonard Springs Nature Park, 4685 S. Leonard Springs Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 18 per day
Click Here to Register

Community Gardening
Schedule a day, March-October
Grow closer to local food! Community Gardening grows both plants and community. Since 1984, the Parks and Recreation Department has offered community gardening opportunities for people of all ages and backgrounds. A favorite venue of volunteer groups, the gardens benefit from a number of service projects throughout the year.
Duties: Volunteers assist the staff in maintaining paths, turning compost, weeding, and harvesting as well as creating and maintaining ornamental, wildlife, and demonstration plantings.
Program Time: Schedule your group for a three- to four-hour shift.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Willie Streeter or Butler Park Community Gardens
Age of Volunteers: 12 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: Groups of 5-25
Click Here to Register


Volunteer to Maintain our Natural Spaces
Schedule a Day, March-November
Help maintain and restore some of Bloomington's most scenic natural areas. Many group volunteer projects are available throughout the Bloomington community. Help is needed in the parks listed below.
Duties: Staff will work with your group or organization to formulate a work plan. Duties may include applying wood chips or gravel to paths, removing invasive plant species, trimming obstructive vegetation, or re-routing trails.
Program Time: Schedule your group for a three- to four-hour shift.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Leonard Springs Nature Park, Griffy Lake Nature Preserve, Wapehani Mountain Bike Park, RCA Park, Winslow Woods Park, and Bryan Park.
Age of Volunteers: 12 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: Groups of 5-25
Click Here to Register

Leonard Springs Nature Day
Tuesday, March 22
Volunteer to teach area sixth-grade students about our awesome natural heritage through multiple stations including karst, creeks, wetlands, and forests.
Duties: If you have an interest in the outdoors and enjoy working with children, sign up for our Leonard Springs Nature Days. Station facilitators and group leaders are needed.
Program Time: 9:15 a.m.-2 p.m.
Training: Online training sessions are available for review. Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Leonard Springs Nature Park, 4685 S. Leonard Springs Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 18 per day
Click Here to Register

Leonard Springs Nature Day
Tuesday, March 29
Volunteer to teach area sixth-grade students about our awesome natural heritage through multiple stations including karst, creeks, wetlands, and forests.
Duties: If you have an interest in the outdoors and enjoy working with children, sign up for our Leonard Springs Nature Days. Station facilitators and group leaders are needed.
Program Time: 9:15 a.m.-2 p.m.
Training: Online training sessions are available for review. Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Leonard Springs Nature Park, 4685 S. Leonard Springs Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 18 per day
Click Here to Register

Bloomington Girls Softball Player Assessment Day
Saturday, April 2
Designed for the beginning through advanced player, this league focuses on responsible competition, including skill building and a complete understanding of the game. League offers several levels of play ranging from tee ball to fastpitch for players ages 4-15 yrs.
Duties: Volunteers step up to the plate and help with the player evaluation and team placement process. In an effort to level the competition, players in each league are evaluated on their throwing, fielding, hitting, and catching abilities. Players are awarded a performance score, then are assigned a team. Volunteers assist staff in running stations and consistently evaluating player skill levels using an evaluation tool.
Program Time: 9:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Location: Twin Lakes Recreation Center, 1700 W. Bloomfield Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of volunteers: 10 Click Here to Register


Leonard Springs Nature Day
Tuesday, April 5
Volunteer to teach area sixth-grade students about our awesome natural heritage through multiple stations including karst, creeks, wetlands, and forests.
Duties: If you have an interest in the outdoors and enjoy working with children, sign up for our Leonard Springs Nature Days. Station facilitators and group leaders are needed.
Program Time: 9:15 a.m.-2 p.m.
Training: Online training sessions are available for review. Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Leonard Springs Nature Park, 4685 S. Leonard Springs Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 18 per day
Click Here to Register

Children's Expo logo Children's Expo
Sunday, April 10
The Children's Expo is a parents' treasure trove for informational, educational, and recreational resources for school-age children. The Expo continues to offer free health screenings by qualified healthcare professionals for children ages 10 yrs. and younger.
Duties: Calling all volunteers interested in child development. Add a festive atmosphere to the event, help professionals perform children's health screenings, assist at the welcome table, provide vendor hospitality, and much more!
Program Time: Shift #1, 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m.
Shift #2, 1:30-5 p.m.
Training: Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Bloomington/Monroe County Convention Center, 302 S. College Ave.
Age of Volunteers: 16 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 10-15 per shift Click Here to Register


Leonard Springs Nature Day
Tuesday, April 12
Volunteer to teach area sixth-grade students about our awesome natural heritage through multiple stations including karst, creeks, wetlands, and forests.
Duties: If you have an interest in the outdoors and enjoy working with children, sign up for our Leonard Springs Nature Days. Station facilitators and group leaders are needed.
Program Time: 9:15 a.m.-2 p.m.
Training: Online training sessions are available for review. Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Leonard Springs Nature Park, 4685 S. Leonard Springs Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 18 per day
Click Here to Register

Earth Week Trail Cleanup
Sunday, April 19
Celebrate Earth Week with a spring cleanup of the Lower Cascades Creek Trail.
Duties: Immerse yourself in the wonders of nature at one of Bloomington's most beautiful parks! Help us maintain our trails with a spring cleanup of Lower Cascades Creek Trail. We'll provide bags and gloves, and together we'll keep our trails litter free.
Program Time: 1-3 p.m.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Lower Cascades Park, 2851 N. Old State Rd. 37
Age of Volunteers: For all ages (Children under age 14 yrs. must be accompanied by an adult.)
Number of Volunteers: 25 Click Here to Register


Earth Week Lake Cleanup
Thursday, April 21
Paddle around Griffy Lake and help clean up one of our most precious local resources during Earth Week.
Duties: Celebrate our Earth and its amazing natural resources by volunteering to help keep our local lake clean and sparkling. Bags, boats, and gloves are provided. Program Time: 5:30-7:30 p.m. Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift. Location: Griffy Lake Nature Preserve, 3300 N. Headley Rd. Age of Volunteers: For all ages (Children under age 14 yrs. must be accompanied by an adult.) Number of Volunteers: 25-50 Click Here to Register


Learn to Ride
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday May 3-5
Children will spend the entire summer cruising on their bicycles after this Bloomington Bikes Week program. Participants learn how to confidently and safely ride their bikes through individual instruction, and also learn about bike maintenance, road safety, and proper bike and helmet fittings.
Duties: Proper instruction is an important aspect of bicycle riding. Volunteers collaborate with Parks and Recreation staff to teach children riding etiquette and techniques that will keep them safe as they ride their bikes.
Program Time: 4-5:30 p.m.
Location: Sherwood Oaks Christian Church, 2700 E. Rogers Rd.- southeast corner of parking lot
Age of Volunteers: 16 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 4-6 per day
Other: Sign up for one or both sessions of Learn to Ride. Volunteers will do a lot of running. Class will be rescheduled in case of inclement weather. Click Here to Register


Leonard Springs Nature Day
Tuesday, May 8 (rain date)
Volunteer to teach area sixth-grade students about our awesome natural heritage through multiple stations including karst, creeks, wetlands, and forests.
Duties: If you have an interest in the outdoors and enjoy working with children, sign up for our Leonard Springs Nature Days. Station facilitators and group leaders are needed.
Program Time: 9:15 a.m.-2 p.m.
Training: Online training sessions are available for review. Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Leonard Springs Nature Park, 4685 S. Leonard Springs Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 18 per day
Click Here to Register

Learn to Ride
Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, May 10-12
Children will spend the entire summer cruising on their bicycles after this Bloomington Bikes Week program. Participants learn how to confidently and safely ride their bikes through individual instruction, and also learn about bike maintenance, road safety, and proper bike and helmet fittings.
Duties: Proper instruction is an important aspect of bicycle riding. Volunteers collaborate with Parks and Recreation staff to teach children riding etiquette and techniques that will keep them safe as they ride their bikes.
Program Time: 5-6:30 p.m.
Location: Sherwood Oaks Christian Church, 2700 E. Rogers Rd.- southeast corner of parking lot
Age of Volunteers: 16 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 4-6 per day
Other: Sign up for one or both sessions of Learn to Ride. Volunteers will do a lot of running. Class will be rescheduled in case of inclement weather. Click Here to Register


The 50+ Expo: A Healthy, Active and Creative Lifestyle Event
Tuesday, May 10 setup/Wednesday, May 11 event
For more than 40 years, the 50+ Expo has been the community's premier showcase of businesses and organizations whose products and services are geared toward people ages 50 years and up.
Duties: Volunteers may decorate, direct exhibitors to their spaces, greet participants, distribute 50+ Expo information, collect participant feedback, and tear down the event.
Program Time: Tuesday: 2-5 p.m. (10 volunteers) Event setup
Wednesday shifts: Shift #1, 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. (5 volunteers) Exhibit hall assistants
Shift #2, 2:30-4:45 p.m. (2 volunteers) Welcome table greeters
Shift #3, 3-5 p.m. (2 volunteers) General Expo and evaluations
Shift #4, 4:30-7 p.m. (2 volunteers) Welcome table
Training: Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Twin Lakes Recreation Center, 1700 W. Bloomfield Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 16 yrs. and up
Click Here to Register


ONGOING SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES

Bloomington Youth Basketball - Season III
January 18-March 10
This league focuses on basketball fundamentals and the application of learned skills during game participation. All leagues are coed through grade 3; girls play in a girls-only league beginning in grade 4. Middle school boys and girls also play on separate teams. Season includes weekly practices and games one night a week. The season concludes with a single-elimination tournament. Teams practice two nights a week for the first two weeks of the season (practice times are decided by the coach), then one night a week for the remainder of the season.
Practices (and games for the Middle School league) begin the week of January 18.
Games begin the week of February 1.
Join us for the satisfaction of playing in a fun and positive setting where everyone learns the game of basketball. Duties: We are looking for coaches who can commit to once -or twice-weekly practices and one game per week. Volunteer coaches will enjoy making a difference in the lives of kids and can help develop our next big IU basketball star. (We suggest two coaches per team.)
Timeline: Prospective coaches must sign up by Thursday, January 7.
Coach selection process completed by Tuesday, January 12.
Selected coaches must attend mandatory coaches meeting either Wednesday, January 13 at 7 p.m. or Thursday, January 14, at 5:30 p.m. at the Twin Lakes Recreation Center. All selected coaches must complete an online coaching certification course from the National Youth Sports Coaches Association (NYSCA). NYSCA certification must be completed by first practice. The certification fee for each coach is $20. The online training is available at nays.org. Scholarships are available to offset expenses associated with the online training. For scholarship information, contact Jeigh Hockersmith at 812-349-3774 or hockersj@bloomington.in.gov.
Program Time: Coaches plan and lead one or two one-hour practices per week and one, one-hour game per week. Location: Twin Lakes Recreation Center, 1700 W. Bloomfield Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 50
Other: Returning coaches and parents have first priority for placement. Volunteers should commit for the entire season.
Click Here to Register


Bloomington Girls Softball
April 9-July 17
Designed for the beginning through advanced player, this league focuses on responsible competition, including skill building and a complete understanding of the game. This league offers several levels of play ranging from tee ball to fastpitch for players ages 4-15 yrs.
Duties: Pitch, hit, field, and throw. Volunteers step up to the plate as season-long coaches and teach the fundamentals of fastpitch softball. Coaches plan practices by integrating various drills and prepare their teams for game competition. Here is your chance to put your mark on tomorrow's athlete.
Timeline: Prospective coaches must sign up by Friday, March 25. Coach selection process completed by Tuesday, March 29. Selected coaches are strongly encouraged to attend the coaches meeting immediately following player evaluations on Saturday, April 2, at 2:30 p.m. at Twin Lakes Recreation Center, 1700 W. Bloomfield Rd. All selected coaches must complete an online coaching certification course from either the National Youth Sports Coaches Association (NYSCA) or the Amateur Softball Association (ASA). NYSCA certification is $20 and ASA certification is $25. The course must be completed prior to the first practice. Scholarships are available to offset expenses associated with the online training. For scholarship information, contact Jeigh Hockersmith at 349-3774 or hockersj@bloomington.in.gov. Practices begin the week of April 9.
Program Time: Coaches will be assigned one or two one-hour practices per week and one, one-hour game per week. Coaches are needed for all age groups. Must be willing to become NYSCA or ASA certified and work from a set practice schedule from April-July.
Locations: Winslow Sports Complex, S. Highland Ave. and Lower Cascades Softball fields, 2851 N. Old State Road 37 Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up Number of volunteers: 30-35

Click Here to Register


Banneker Afterschool Program
Twice weekly, January 4-May 27
Help students excel in math and reading skills by volunteering to read with students and review basic school-age mathematics. Additionally, facilitate activities in art and science and engage children in active games that stimulate creativity and critical thinking.
Duties: Whether you enjoy working with youth or have professional aspirations to, this service opportunity gives you hands-on experience. Tutor one-on-one or in small groups twice weekly.
Program Time: 3:30-5 p.m.
Training: Volunteers are required to attend an orientation prior to the program.
Location: Fairview Elementary School, 500 W. Eighth St.
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 8-10 per day, Monday-Thursday
Other: We ask that you commit to two days a week for the entire semester.
Click Here to Register


Soccer Sport Shorties
Tuesdays, February 2-March 8
The indoor turf field at the Twin Lakes Recreation Center is the ideal place for preschool athletes to learn the basic skills of team soccer! Athletes take part in fun, recreational drills to develop kicking, passing, and ball handling skills in this weekly program.
Duties: Are you a soccer fanatic? Do you like children at the adorable ages of 3-6 yrs.? Here is your chance to help develop the next IU soccer superstar. Work with Bloomington Parks and Recreation staff to run an introductory soccer program geared toward preschoolers.
Program Time: 9:45-10:45 a.m.
Location: Twin Lakes Recreation Center, 1700 W. Bloomfield Rd.
Age of Volunteers: 16 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 2
Training: Coaches' Orientation-Tuesday, February 2, 9:30 a.m. at the Twin Lakes Recreation Center (immediately prior to the first session)
Click Here to Register


Bloomington Walking Club Bloomington Walking Club
Thursdays, April 7-October 27
Join a fun and informal gathering of walkers to develop healthy physical activity habits and meet new friends. Walkers choose from a two- or four-mile route and go at their own pace. Presented by IU Health Bloomington, Southern Indiana Physicians, Purdue Extension, and Bloomington Parks and Recreation.
Duties: Embrace a healthy lifestyle and share it with others from the Bloomington community. Lead the walking group on their two- or four-mile route. Ensure safety and provide encouragement along the way.
Program Time: 5:45-7:15 p.m.
Training: Volunteers are required to attend a volunteer orientation prior to the program.
Location: Olcott Park, 2300 E. Canada Drive
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 1-2 Click Here to Register


Adopt-a-Trail
Monthly inspections/One-year commitment
More than 30 trail miles in Bloomington's city parks need periodic inspections and maintenance to remain safe and usable. Volunteers have been valuable in establishing and maintaining our trails for many years. Parks and Recreation staff provide training and equipment to volunteer groups of any size for monthly trail monitoring and annual trail maintenance.
Duties: Inspect adopted trail at least once a month. Complete and submit reports on trail status. Provide maintenance as needed.
Program Time: Trail inspections can be completed at your leisure. Schedule your trail work day with the Adopt-a-Trail coordinator.
Timeline: Volunteers must submit an online application, then complete an orientation.
Location: Various trails are available for adoption.
Age of Volunteers: 12 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: Individuals and groups of varying sizes are welcome. Recruitment class determined by number of available trails.
Click Here to Register


Adopt-an-Acre
Monthly visits/One-year commitment
Adopt-an-Acre is an all-volunteer program that gives the public the opportunity to actively address invasive plant issues in Bloomington and Monroe County. Griffy has thriving populations of bush honeysuckle, garlic mustard, winter creeper, privet, and multiflora rose, all which are out-competing native plants. Parks and Recreation staff provide the necessary training in invasive plant identification and equip volunteers to proactively monitor and remove impeding plants within their adopted area.
Duties: Inspect and make progress in removing invasive plants in adopted area of Griffy Lake Nature Preserve a minimum of once a month. Complete and submit monthly progress reports. Attend quarterly training workshops or review electronic training materials to adequately identify invasive plants and learn proper technique for removing.
Program Time: Inspections and progress visits can be completed at your leisure.
Time line: Volunteers must submit an online application, then complete an orientation.
Locations: Various parcels of land are available for adoption at Griffy Lake Nature Preserve. We have plot sizes for individuals and for groups.
Age of Volunteers: 12 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: Individuals and groups of varying sizes are welcome. Recruitment class determined by number of available plots.
Click Here to Register


Adopt-a-Stream
Monthly Inspections/One-year commitment
Adopt a Stream is an all-volunteer program that gives the public an opportunity to be actively involved in conserving and maintaining the natural wealth and beauty of streams that run through public park property owned by the City of Bloomington and Monroe County. Staff provides training and equipment for monthly stream monitoring and annual stream maintenance.
Duties: Inspect adopted stream at least once a month. Complete and submit reports on stream condition. Provide general maintenance such as removing debris and litter. Attend a Hoosier Riverwatch workshop and perform water quality monitoring tests at the stream at least four times per year.
Program Time: Stream inspections can be completed at your leisure.
Time line: Volunteers must submit an online application, then complete an orientation.
Volunteers must submit an online application by April8. An orientation takes place in late April. One-year appointment starts May.
Location: Various streams are available for adoption in Bloomington and Monroe County.
Age of Volunteers: 12 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: Individuals and groups of varying sizes are welcome. Recruitment class determined by number of streams available.
Click Here to Register



Leisure Companion
May-August
The Leisure Companion Program is a service in which participants with disabilities are partnered with a volunteer companion who provides additional support during participation in inclusive activities. The level of support will vary according to the specific needs of each individual.
Duties: As a Leisure Companion, you facilitate inclusion by advocating for the participant, providing support during activities, protecting the dignity of the participant, emphasizing similarities of participants, creating an environment for success, encouraging independent participation, and most of all, being a supportive friend!
Program Time: Dates and times will vary according to program needs.
Training: Volunteers are required to attend an orientation prior to the program.
Location: Locations of events and programs vary depending on program registration.
Age of volunteers: 16 yrs. and up

For more information about becoming a Leisure Companion, contact Amy Shrake, Inclusive Recreation Coordinator, at shrakea@bloomington.in.gov