Advocating for Volunteerism at the Capital

March 09, 2017 | United Way Team

In February, our Volunteer Engagement volunteers and staff traveled to Des Moines for 55+ Initiative’s Legislative Breakfast and Iowa’s Volunteer Day on the Hill. They advocated for RSVP and 55+ Initiative volunteer programs.

United Way’s 55+ Initiative is part of the largest volunteer organization in the state of Iowa for people age 55 and better. Between July 2015 and June 2016, more than 5,300 Iowans volunteered nearly 345,000 hours (an estimated $8,128,200 value to Iowa or 166 FTEs for Iowa nonprofits).

RSVP focuses on a wide variety of volunteer opportunities:

  • Disaster Services: Volunteers help individuals and communities prepare, respond, and recover from disasters and increase community resiliency.
  • Financial Stability: Support/facilitate access to services and resources that contribute to improving economic well-being and security of economically disadvantaged people.
  • Education: Volunteers provide service to improve educational outcomes and help children succeed academically.
  • Healthy Futures: Volunteers meet community health needs such as access to care, aging in place, and assisting seniors in maintaining independence and quality of life.
  • Service to Veterans: Projects positively impact veterans’ quality of life and improve military family strength in Iowa.
  • Local Priorities: Volunteers serve their community by engaging in service activities outside of national performance measures, but support intents of authorizing legislation.
  • Capacity Building: Assist with services that enable organizations to provide more, better, and sustained direct services.  Activities support or enhance program delivery or address the most pressing community needs.