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We’ve Been Here Before…Volunteers Responding to Disaster

Sep 1, 2020

The Lightning Fires that consumed our beautiful mountains with a relentless ferocity unleashed a torrent of bravery, kindness, spirit, and ingenuity from every part of our beloved community.  People are donating, volunteering, feeding people, and sharing housing with neighbors, coworkers, friends, and strangers in record numbers.  While we are just one agency involved in this … Read more

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Fire Safety and How You Can Help

Aug 19, 2020

Thank you to all who have stepped to help their neighbors. As we continue to mobilize and place volunteers our first priority is community safety.  Below you will find important information about evacuation resources and fire safety. Please heed all recommendations to evacuate as needed. The County has established evacuation centers. Call 211 for more … Read more

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Be the Difference Awards- Call for Nominations Happening Now

Aug 14, 2020

We are pleased to announce that the Call for Nominations for the 14th Annual Be the Difference Awards is now open.  The “Be the Difference” Awards are about honoring the individuals, groups, non-profits, and businesses that transform Santa Cruz County through volunteerism.   We invited you to share your stories of inspiration. Have you worked … Read more

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Pandemic Learning and Emergency Preparation

Aug 13, 2020

Is your family ready for an emergency? 2020 has taught us that life can be unpredictable. Unfortunately, while managing the ensuing pandemic, we could simultaneously find ourselves facing power outages, earthquakes, flooding, and fires. Should we face a natural disaster in the coming months, we want to help you get prepared. We’ve joined the California For … Read more

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Creating Space and Connection for Youth During the Pandemic

Aug 5, 2020

With the spread of COVID-19, youth programming across the country has adapted to new ways of engaging children and teens both online and in person. During this time, YouthSERVE has remained dedicated to connecting youth, ages 11-17, with rewarding volunteer projects across Santa Cruz County. During the COVID-19 pandemic, our participants are completing at home … Read more

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Organizing For Racial Equity

Jun 2, 2020

Systemic Racism exists in America, in California, in our beloved community, and in our agency. We see the evidence in unequal poverty rates, graduation rates, disproportionate incarceration rates, even in life span. We see it in the experiences of our own programs and when working with our clients. What is happening in our country is … Read more

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Prioritizing Hope Through Community Connection

May 29, 2020

Our sense of SELF. Our sense of WELLNESS. We carry forward with each. We wear them like armor, sink into them like a deep unforeseen hole, or hold them up brazenly like a golden ray of sun. Somedays we may vacillate and float between which way to carry them. Other days we may have more … Read more

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Creating Connections Through Grocery Shopping

May 20, 2020

https://www.youtube.com/embed/pWBwd2L6nB4 Over the past two months as businesses, schools, and nonprofits have shuttered their doors and suspended programs, we’ve all been forced to adapt.  At the Volunteer Center, we’ve used this time to assess our resources and our strengths and we have made huge shifts to meet today’s immediate critical needs. Through this process, we’ve … Read more

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Why I’m Giving my Stimulus Check to my Community….

May 6, 2020

Dick Davis joined our staff on #GivingTuesdayNow for the video premiere of Keep the Lights on Santa Cruz County to share why he is proud to donate his stimulus check to his community. Learn more below and watch his interview with Executive Director Karen Delaney. Hello, My name is Dick Davis and I am on … Read more

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Keep the Lights On Santa Cruz County Watch Party- May 5th

May 3, 2020

Like many community organizations, here at the Volunteer Center, we’ve made huge shifts in the way we business in order to both continue operations and meet the immediate critical needs of the community during the public health emergency. This public health emergency has had a huge emotional and economic toll on so many. From community … Read more

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Keep the Lights On for our Environment

Apr 22, 2020

Today, on this Earth Day, we are grateful for the community leaders and local organizations that cultivate the nature lover, budding scientist, and environmental advocate in each of us. Our community is happier and healthier because of the effort you put forward every day. We are honored to highlight five organizations fundraising through the Human … Read more

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National Volunteer Week during the Coronavirus Crisis

Apr 17, 2020

Acting with compassion for others and in ways that make our community stronger is what volunteers do. We see this during the COVID Crisis in people who are making and donating masks, shopping for seniors, delivering food and staffing shelters to help our neighbors Shelter in Place and all of us flatten the curve. In … Read more

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COVID-19 Response Volunteers Needed- Can You Help?

Apr 8, 2020

We are all living in a new reality with shelter-in-place. While some of us are continuing to work, others are wondering when they will be able to work and worrying about paying rent. While some of us are crowded with the kids at home, others are living alone and scared to leave the house. Whatever … Read more

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Putting Community First During a Public Health Emergency

Mar 13, 2020

Our mission at the Volunteer Center is to transform our community and ourselves for good through the power of each one of us finding meaningful ways to contribute our time, talent and resources to make our world better.  While this is always a big job – engaging 15,000 volunteers to donate $11 million worth of … Read more

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COVID-19 & The 2020 Human Race

Mar 13, 2020

While the celebration scheduled for May 9th will not cap off our six-week fundraising campaign this year, we feel undaunted as we know our generous community  is not one to be deterred. We also know that the most vital piece of the Human Race is the six week online giving campaign. Last year our fundraisers … Read more

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Why I Teach Literacy- A Personal Testimonial

Mar 10, 2020

Why do you volunteer? We all have our stories, and here’s mine: When I was 18, I was diagnosed with severe depression. I did not know, then, that depression would debilitate me for much of my adult life, nor that my diagnosis was incomplete. It would be decades before I found a doctor who helped … Read more

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Ready to Launch our 40th Human Race

Feb 12, 2020

We are so excited to launch our 40th year of the Human Race later this month at the Kickoff Breakfast on Feb 26th. The Human Race is the perfect picture of the world we believe in– big-hearted, bold, and giving– Thanks to the people, organizations, and businesses it attracts. Year after year, we are proud … Read more

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Tutoring with Tech

Feb 3, 2020

On December 3rd, 18 tutors joined Claire Castagna at the Tutoring with Tech Workshop. The focus was to explore videos and apps that are designed for English learners and which students could use as homework. “We know that the one or two hours we spend each week with our student just isn’t enough,” Claire explained. … Read more

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Wishing You a Happy Holiday- See you in 2020

Dec 20, 2019

The Volunteer Center of Santa Cruz County’s offices in Santa Cruz, Live Oak, and Santa Cruz are closed Friday, December 20th until Thursday, January 2nd, 2020. As we take time with our friends and families during the holidays, we rest knowing that because of your support of our family of 18 programs, this year we … Read more

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