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Informational, get-acquainted session for prospective volunteers, nonprofits

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Shelly Birkelo
January 19, 2013

— Organizers of a Friday open house for prospective volunteers hope the event will help fill volunteer gaps left by the discontinuation of United Way of North Rock County Volunteer Network.

The Voluntary Action Center, Retired and Senior Volunteer Program of Rock County and United Way Blackhawk Region will host the one-hour gathering at 8:30 a.m. at the Rock County Job Center, 1900 Center Ave.

Prospective volunteers and representatives from nonprofit agencies and faith organizations are invited.

"Since the merger of United Way of North Rock County and Stateline United Way into United Way Blackhawk Region, something had to be done to absorb or transition the volunteers of the agencies who had been working with North Rock to accommodate them," said David Zimdars, VAC executive director.

The Voluntary Action Center and Retired and Senior Volunteer Program agreed to share North Rock's volunteer database and do their best to contact those volunteers so they could tell them they have a choice to continue volunteering, Zimdars said.

"We want volunteers to know we are here and will continue with the traditions of the Volunteer Network that were in place," he said.

Zimdars said it is important to reach out to volunteers and as many agencies as possible to let them know what VAC and RSVP can do to help.

"If they have volunteer needs, they can advertise through us, and if people are looking for volunteer opportunities, we can connect them," he said.

Agencies also can tap into VAC's grant center.

The meeting is to make everyone aware of the benefits through VAC and RSVP, Zimdars said.

"We hope to give a review of what services we can offer them and how they can help us,'' he said.

Zimdars, Bob Harlow of RSVP and Steve Kinkade of United Way will speak and time will be allowed for questions and answers. Informational brochures summarizing what VAC and RSVP do also will be available.

He encouraged those interested in volunteering or in need of volunteer services to attend.

"The intent isn't to replace volunteer coordinators at nonprofit agencies," Zimdars said. "It is to enhance what they already do."



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