Go Back to School This Year—Volunteer!

August 16, 2018 | Kayla Paulson

Last year United Way of East Central Iowa (UWECI) connected more than 2,600 volunteers to opportunities in their area of interest. And now Back-to-School volunteering is on the horizon. Learn how you can give to a school this, or any semester, with some ideas from Kayla Paulson, UWECI Senior Coordinator, 55+ Initiative.

Whether or not you have school-aged children, you have probably seen school supplies in any store over the past few weeks. What you may not be as aware of is how important volunteers are for local schools and nonprofits. Many programs and resources students receive rely heavily on volunteers.

You can help fight for social, emotional, and educational development of the youth in our community by volunteering during the school year. You can:

  • Adopt a HACAP classroom
  • Help kids with their homework at Waypoint’s KidsPoint
  • Be a VIP Reading Mentor
  • Share your love of robotics
  • And more.

During my six years with United Way, I have found that your expertise at fourth-grade math or fun reading voices isn’t the game changer. It is the fact that you care enough to volunteer and show each kid you encounter that they are worth fighting for. Kids thrive when they have role models and interactions with people outside their normal spheres of influence.

Not able to give your time at this point? Many schools have supply lists you can fill students in those schools. Contact a school near you to find out their building’s specific needs.

Frequently sought items are:

  • Colored pencils
  • Composition notebooks
  • Crayons
  • Dry-erase markers
  • Erasers
  • Glue
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Markers
  • Pencils
  • Pens
  • Sanitizer wipes
  • Spiral wide ruled notepads
  • Tissues
  • Vinyl three-prong folders
  • Vinyl two-pocket folders
  • Wide ruled loose-leaf notebook paper

Learn about additional opportunities to fight for youth in our community. Volunteer or give today!