We recently partnered with the team at Red Nova Labs in Westwood, KS to find Kansas City Companies That Won't Stand for Soul Sucking 9 to 5 Workdays. At these companies, talent is rewarded, ambition is applauded and work is actually fun.
One critical part of RNL's company culture is their passion for impact in the Kansas City community. Just this past February, RNL donated over 2,500 lbs of food through a company canned food drive to Harvesters and participated in their well-loved Souper Bowl Saturday event. RNL channeled their competitive spirit to turn the cause into a battle between departments. By the end of the week each department’s piles were too large to count and it ended in a tie. Next, RNL plans to use their marketing skills to develop creative solutions to recruiting volunteers and foster homes for KCPetProject.
RNL's passion to connect to the community through volunteerism has got us thinking, and ultimately led us to this list. These 10 organizations are impacting our community in meaningful ways and require the strength, creativity, passion and energy from volunteers like you and I to continue to impact our city for good.
816 Bicycle Collective
The 816 Bicycle Collective is a really interesting initiative that provides a workshop space and hands on training to local bicycle riders that need help repairing their ride. This place runs on volunteers, so if you have an aptitude for repairing bicycles this is the place for you. Bikes that would have otherwise been destroyed are repaired by a collective of volunteers and then distributed to those who need them.
More info: http://816bike.org/donate/
Serve KC is making volunteering in Kansas City easy and fun with their website meetup.com/servekc. This site is a brilliant way to bring together people who want to meet up with others to serve in various ways and areas across the city. A calendar of volunteer events is provided on the site and you can sign up for the events that interest you. Meet Up KC is a great way to both meet people and to serve the community.
More info: http://www.meetup.com/ServeKC/
Minddrive is an award winning educational program engaging urban teens through hands-on learning and mentor involvement. Minddrive uses environmental issues in their projects and has converted 4 gas-powered cars to be fully electric. Volunteers play a huge role in the program by showing up for the youth every week as mentors during the learning process. Minddrive looks for mentors who can give of their time and talent to enhance the lives of these youth, thus making an impact on our future generation.
More Info: http://minddrive.org
City Union Mission
The City Union mission plays an important role in the downtown area by providing short term housing to area homeless along with skills training, grocery supplements, school supplies and even summer camps for kids. City Union Mission does not receive government funding but instead they rely on local support and an active volunteer base. Volunteers can chose there tier of commitment with as little as 2-6 hours of volunteered time and as much as regular involvement over months. City Union Mission is open from the hottest days of summer to the coldest nights of winter and its one of our personal favorite volunteer opportunities in Kansas City.
More Info: http://www.cityunionmission.org/volunteer/
In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx KC is a program of local, selforganized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience here in our city. At a TEDxKC events, TEDTalk videos and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection. Volunteers help run local events Andrea Carroll is the Volunteer Coordinator for TEDxKC , contact her if you would like to help with TEDxKC event, “Changing the Narrative” at the Kauffman Center.
More Info: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kansas Special Olympics
Special Olympics Kansas is dedicated to empowering individuals with intellectual disabilities to become physically fit, productive and respected members of society through sports competitions, health and nutrition programs and leadership development. Annually over 30,000 dedicated Kansans share their time to provide athletes with the best sports, health, and life changing opportunities possible. Special Olympics Kansas encourages the involvement of new volunteers who can share their talents in a variety of areas including: Coaching / Event Volunteering / Games Management / Health Screening.
More Info: http://www.ksso.org/volunteer
Tutorious is a KC based nonprofit tutoring organization, focusing on ACT preparation. It is Tutorious’ mission to democratize tutoring by providing all students with access to high quality, individualized tutoring services. Tutorious provide innovative and affordable test prep - focusing on the ACT - to help students take the next step in continuing their education. Volunteers run the augmented tutoring program that incorporates the skills and expertise of volunteers with relevant, topical instruction for a richer learning experience for students.
More info: http://tutorious.org/augmented-tutoring/
Hospital Hill Run
Hospital Hill Run is the oldest road race in Kansas City, MO. What started out with 99 runners, has blossomed to over 9,000 participants.. The event hosts a 5K, 10K and Half Marathon through the streets of Kansas City, MO. The annual run has helped raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for local charities. The next run will be June 5-6, 2015 for the 42nd annual Hospital Hill Run. Kelly Rasor is the volunteer coordinator for the event, please contact her if you would like to help with next summer’s run.
More info: Kelly@hospitalhillrun.com
Humane Society of Greater Kansas City
For all the animal lovers, the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City is no-kill shelter that cares for the lost, abandoned, and broken pets of the Greater Kansas City area. There are many ways to connect with the humane society as a volunteer—from helping animals at the care center, to serving with the rescue and response teams, to organizing events and grassroots outreach to the Kansas City community. Gina Levra is the Volunteer Coordinator, give her a call at at 913-596-1000, ext. 122 to discuss which volunteer opportunities best fit you and your lifestyle.
More info: http://www.hsgkc.org/
Children’s Mercy Hospital
Children’s Mercy Hospital is nationally recognized for its world-class pediatric expertise, research and clinical care. And volunteers are an essential part of the team at Children's Mercy Hospital. Volunteers assist with activities involving inpatient children with arts and games. Volunteers also help administratively to run the gift shop, snack shops, the information desk and many other hospital services. Serving at Children’s Mercy is a rewarding way to give back to children and families in need.
More Info: http://www.childrensmercy.org
Volunteering isn't just for youth groups and do-gooders. Really, its for people who love this city and are looking for a way to engage with every part of it. Red Nova Labs and hundreds of companies and individuals like them are making volunteering a way of life and, honestly, we find it inspiring.
We know we're missing some places to give back in KC. Let us know who in the comments.