Days of Service

Days of Service bring national attention to volunteering on several days every year. The largest Days of Service include:

                    o        MLK Jr. Day of Service (January)

    o        Global Youth Service Day (April)

    o        9/11 Day of Service & Remembrance (September)

    o        Make a Difference Day (October)

    o        Family Volunteer Day (November)

    o    Giving Tuesday (December)

The Volunteer Center of Story County plans and coordinates large-scale service projects on many of these days to engage the Story County community in the national service movement. 

January: Martin Luther King Jr Day 

Dr. King believed in a nation of freedom and justice for everybody. He believed in nonviolence. He believed that by coming together we can live up to the potential of America.

The MLK Day of Service is a way to honor Rev. Martin Luther King's life and vision. This day of service honors his teachings and inspires people to help solve social problems. This is why we have a day of service where, Americans of every age and background celebrate Dr. King through service projects that strengthen communities, empower individuals, bridge barriers, and create solutions.

220 volunteers served for MLK Day of Service 2016, providing almost 591 hours of service. They worked on 8 different service projects in Story County:
  • Habitat For Humanity Remodel
  • Sorting and organizing donations for Overflow Thrift Store
  • Painting at Creative Counseling Services
  • Organizing library at Lutheran Services in Iowa
  • Making blankets with Project Linus
  • Making story boxes for Raising Readers in Story County
  • Participating in a Community Action Poverty Simulation to bring awareness to the struggles of those living in poverty
  • Making T-Shirts Rugs to raise money for Emergency Residence Project

April: Global Youth Service Day 

Global Youth Service Day celebrates and mobilizes the millions of young people who improve their communities each day of the year through service. Global Youth Service Day is the largest service event in the world, and the only day of service dedicated to children and youth. Global Youth Service Day is a campaign of YSA (Youth Service America)

In 2015 the Volunteer Center partnered with Iowa State University, Campustown Action Association and Reiman Gardens for Stash the Trash service project. 317 Volunteers served over 1,000 hours throughout one day cleaning up the city of Ames and Iowa State's campus collecting trash and debris. 

September:  9/11 Day of Service & Remembrance 

The Volunteer Center encourages community members to get out and volunteer on this day. In 2013 the Volunteer Center talked about the importance of volunteering to high school students and gave them information about how they can get involved in their community.

In 2011 the Volunteer Center partnered with the Maxwell Area Renewal Committee (MARC) on a community service project in Maxwell, IA.  Over 100 volunteers served over 300 hours on September 11th by painting the VFW building, the American Legion Auxiliary building, a Veteran's Memorial community board, the homes of 2 Maxwell veterans, many Main Street businesses, and clearing storm debris and litter.  In total, there were over 20 projects! 

October: Make a Difference Day 

Make A Difference Day is a celebration of neighbors helping neighbors. Millions of volunteers from around the world will unite in a common mission to improve the lives of others on Make A Difference Day. 

The Volunteer Center partners with Central Iowa RSVP, Heartland Senior Services, and MICA to form the Story County Commission on Energy Efficiency. This group hosts the Winter Weatherization Challenge each year. Volunteers are trained to weatherize the homes of elderly, disabled, and low-income individuals. On October 22, 2016, volunteers donated 289.5 hours to weatherize 45 Story County homes.

November: Family Volunteer Day

The Saturday before Thanksgiving is Family Volunteer Day. Each year the Volunteer Center encourages families to volunteer together. In 2015, the Volunteer Center facilitated a project where 39 volunteers of all ages assembled over 70 story boxes that were donated to a local literacy-based organization. Family Volunteer Day is powered by GenerationOn and sponsored by Disney Friends For Change. 

December: Giving Tuesday 

The Tuesday after Black Friday is known as Giving Tuesday. We have a day for giving thanks. We have two for getting deals. Now, we have #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back. On Tuesday, December 2, 2014, charities, families, businesses, community centers, and students around the world will come together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give.

In 2014, our inaugural year participating in Giving Tuesday, the VCSC mobilized 27 volunteers throughout the city of Ames, organizing supplies for Overflow Thrift Store and making scarves and blankets for local nonprofits.