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For more information on how you, your group or your business can become a volunteer, contact Kim Ecenbarger at 349-3739 or ecenbark@bloomington.in.gov

FALL/WINTER 2014 VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES

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ONE-DAY SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES

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.
Bloomington North performs a play that is funny
Come to the library; you don't need any money!
See a lot of good tricks. We will show them to you.
Your mother will not mind at all if we do!
With snacks and crafts and fun games to play,
Bloomington Parks and Recreation makes a Seussrific day!
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

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 Days
Tuesday, March 24
Tuesday, March 31
Tuesday, April 7
Tuesday, April 14
Tuesday, April 21
Tuesday, April 28 (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 Day programs. Station facilitators and group leaders are needed.
Program Time: 9:15 a.m.-2 p.m.
Training: Volunteers have access to online training materials. Additional questions regarding roles will be addressed the day of your 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

Mad Egg Dash
Friday, March 27
This isn't your grandma's egg hunt! Participants ditch the pink baskets and frilly bonnets because they'll need all their wits about them in this no-holds-barred, after dark egg dash. When the starting horn sounds adults make a mad dash to grab as many eggs as they can! The winning eggs go to the swift, the strategic, and the lucky.
Duties: Dash over and help the mad rabbit with course construction, pre-dash activities, registration, and teardown.
Program Time: 6:30-10 p.m.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Bryan Park, 1100 S. Woodlawn Ave.-Woodlawn Shelter
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 15
Click Here to Register

Bloomington Girls Softball Player Assessment Day
Saturday, April 4
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

Children's Expo
Sunday, April 12
Now in its 30th year, 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 under.
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 a.m.-5 p.m.
Training: Volunteers are trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: The 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

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-Waterfall Shelter
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 23
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

Bryan Park Creek Maintenance Days
Wednesday, May 6
First Wednesday of the month May-October
Bloomington Parks and Recreation has earned Community Wildlife Habitat certification from the National Wildlife Federation. The Bryan Park Creek naturalized area played a key role in certification and requires periodic maintenance to control invasive plant species and ensure native plant success.
Duties: Volunteers assist with monthly upkeep of this natural area along beautiful Bryan Park Creek. Help maintain native plants by cutting back overgrown brush, removing invasive plants, and collecting native plant seeds.
Program Time: 5:30-7 p.m.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Bryan Park, 1100 S. Woodlawn Ave.-Woodlawn Shelter
Age of Volunteers: 12 yrs. and up (Children under age 12 yrs. must be accompanied by an adult.)
Number of Volunteers: 5-30
Click Here to Register

The 50+ Expo - Tropical Paradise
Tuesday, May 12 set-up/Wednesday, May 13 event
The 50+ Expo features free health screenings, plus an expo hall filled with exhibitors with information about products and services for seniors and their families.
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. (10-12 volunteers)/Event setup
Wednesday shifts:
Shift #1, 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m. (5-7 volunteers)/Exhibit hall assistants
Shift #2, 2:30-4:45 p.m. (2 volunteers)/Welcome table
Shift #3, 3-5 p.m. (2 volunteers)/General Expo and evaluations
Shift #4, 4:30-7 p.m. (2 volunteers)/Welcome table
Shift #5, 5-7 p.m. (2 volunteers)/General Expo and evaluations
Shift #6, 7-8 p.m. (5 volunteers)/Event teardown
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

Ferguson Dog Park Cleanup Days
Wednesday, May 13
Second Wednesday of the month May-October
Bloomington Parks and Recreation opened Ferguson Dog Park, a park specifically for dogs and their owners, in fall 2012. Our goal is to offer a safe and clean green space at the park. Periodic maintenance and upkeep is needed to ensure our four-legged and two-legged visitors enjoy their visit.
Duties: Do-good animal owners and animal lovers needed to assist with monthly upkeep of this designated dog space at the Ferguson Dog Park. Help maintain play areas by clipping, clearing, and cleaning in celebration of our canine play area.
Program Time: 5:30-7 p.m.
Training: Volunteers will be trained at the beginning of their shift.
Location: Ferguson Dog Park, 1100 S. 4300 N. Stone Mill Road
Age of Volunteers: 12 yrs. and up (Children under age 12 yrs. must be accompanied by an adult.)
Number of Volunteers: 5-30
Other: Program runs the second Wednesday of the month May-October.
Click Here to Register

ONGOING SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES


Banneker Afterschool Program
Twice weekly, January 5-May 22
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 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

Bloomington Youth Basketball-Season III and Middle School
January 19-March 28
The Bloomington Youth Basketball League focuses on basketball fundamentals and the application of learned skills during game participation for players in grades K-Middle School. All leagues are coed through grade 3; girls play in a girls-only league beginning in grade 4. 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 begin the week of January 19. Games begin the week of February 2. 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 Friday, January 9.
Coach selection process completed by Tuesday, January 13.
Selected coaches must attend mandatory coaches training on Wednesday, January 14, 7 p.m. or Thursday, January 15, 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 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


Soccer Sport Shorties
Tuesdays, February 3-March 10
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 us develop our next IU soccer superstar. Work with Bloomington Parks and Recreation staff to run an introductory soccer program geared toward preschoolers.
Program Time: 10-11:15 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 3, 9:30 a.m. at the Twin Lakes Recreation Center.
Click Here to Register


Adopt-a-Trail
April 2015-March 2016/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 basic maintenance during each visit as needed. Do at least one work day per year. Staff works with you or your group to formulate a work plan.
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 by February 27. An orientation takes place in late March. One-year appointment starts April 1.
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 vacant trails.
Submit an application:
Click Here to Register


Adopt-an-Acre
April 2015-March 2016/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 is burdened with an overgrowth of bush honeysuckle, garlic mustard, winter creeper, Privet, and multiflora rose, all which are out-competing our 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. Schedule a minimum of one structured work day per year. Staff works with you or your group to formulate a work plan.
Program Time: Inspections and progress visits can be completed at your leisure.
Timeline:
Volunteers must submit an online application by February 27. An orientation takes place the week of March 23. One-year appointment starts April 1.
Location: 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. As part of our pilot program, we'll begin with 5-7 volunteers or volunteer groups.
Submit an application: Click Here to Register


Adopt-a-Stream
May 2015-April 2016/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 provide 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 techniques at the stream at least four times per year. Schedule a minimum of one structured work day per year. Staff works with you or your group to formulate a work plan.
Program Time: Stream inspections can be completed at your leisure.
Timeline:
Volunteers must submit an online application by March 27. 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 vacant streams.
Submit an application:
Click Here to Register


Park Ambassador
May 2015-April 2016
Weekly Inspections/One-year commitment
The Park Ambassador program promotes community stewardship and bridges the communication between the community and the Parks and Recreation Department, and sends a message that the community cares about its parks.
Duties: Park Ambassadors become public stewards of the Bloomington Parks and Recreation Department. Through weekly visits to local parks, Ambassadors document maintenance needs, report acts of vandalism, interact with park users, promote park safety, and encourage an overall positive use of public space.
Program Time: Each visit requires approximately a one-hour assessment followed by the completion of a brief observation report.
Timeline:
Volunteers must submit an online application by February 27; screening interviews take place in March; orientation takes place in April. One-year appointment starts May 1.
Location: Various parks are available.
Age of volunteers: 21 yrs. and up
Number of volunteers: 1 volunteer per identified park
Submit an application:
Click Here to Register


Bloomington Girls Softball
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 a season-long coach 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 27.
Coach selection process completed by Tuesday, March 31.
Selected coaches must attend mandatory coaches training on Saturday, April 4, 3 p.m. at Twin W. Bloomfield Rd.
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 349-3774 or hockersj@bloomington.in.gov
Practices begin the week of April 13.
Program Time: Coaches will be assigned one or two one-hour practices per week and one, one-hour game per week. Looking for coaches in all age groups. Must be willing to become NYSCA certified and work from a set practice schedule from April-June.
Location: 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


Bloomington Walking Club
Thursdays, April 2-October 29
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 Indiana Running Company, IU Health Bloomington, Southern Indiana Physicians, 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: 5:30-7:30 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


Bloomington Community Farmers' Market
Saturdays, April 4-November 28
From April through November, farmers and vendors fill Showers Common with locally grown produce, annual and perennial plants, and freshly baked bread for the Saturday morning Market. Local musicians perform while thousands of people find their way among the corn and tomatoes, local dairy products, and warm scents of fresh herbs. The Market often feels like equal parts shopping, socializing, and treasure hunt. Come early so you can amble among friends as you seek out that dried lavender or fresh basil you have been dreaming about.
Duties: If you enjoy the ambiance of the Farmers' Market, this is the volunteer opportunity for you! Work collaboratively with the Market supervisor with special events associated with Market and promote Bloomington Parks and Recreation programs by staffing the Bloomington Parks and Recreation table.
Program Time: 9:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Training: Volunteers are required to attend a volunteer orientation prior to the program.
Location: Showers Common, Eighth and Morton Streets
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 1-4
Other: Volunteer for one to four Saturdays a month.
Click Here to Register


Tee Ball Sport Shorties
Saturdays, April 25-June 6
Sport Shortie participants learn the basic skills of baseball in a fun and safe atmosphere where parent participation is welcomed and encouraged.
Duties: Children experience the FUNdamentals of team sports at an early age. Are you a sports fanatic? Do you like children at the adorable ages of 3-6 yrs.? Do you think you may want to be a next generation IU coach? Here's your chance to help develop our next Albert Pujols, Derek Jeter, or Derrek Lee. Work with park staff to run an introductory baseball program geared toward preschoolers.
Program Time: Coaches assigned one, one-hour shift between 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Training: Coaches Orientation: Thursday, April 23, 5:30-6 p.m. at the Banneker Community Center, 930 W. Seventh St.
Location: Lower Cascades Park, 3601 N. Old State Rd. 37
Age of Volunteers: 18 yrs. and up
Number of Volunteers: 15
Click Here to Register


Leisure Companion
January-April
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: Location of events and programs vary depending on program registration.
Age of volunteers: 16 yrs. and up