A Special Safety Message to our Volunteers

Oct 14, 2021

Dear Amazing Volunteers, Time and time again this year, our community needed help and you answered the call. Sometimes to stay at home and wait patiently, making masks, phoning seniors and raising funds online to keep our community whole through those early days of COVID. During the fires you showed up in record numbers to … Read more

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Connect for Good Outside

Aug 5, 2021

It’s a clear-skied, beautiful summer in Santa Cruz County so far, and with so much uncertainty regarding the Delta variant and what activities are safe, there has never been a better time to volunteer outside.  Volunteering outside is the safest way to put your values into action, make a lasting impact and connect with your … Read more

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2021 Civic 50 – Prioritizing Investing in Strengthening our Community

Jun 17, 2021

This year’s list of The Civic 50 promotes National and Regional Companies that choose to make investing in strengthening our communities and civil society – giving, volunteering and voting – a priority. Receiving this award is not a vanity or popularity exercise; these companies are selected based on detailed data about their policy, practice, leadership, … Read more

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Elevating What Works to Support the Unhoused In Santa Cruz County

May 3, 2021

We are all aware of the struggles to house people in our community. Through a growing focus, learning, and coordination we have made monumental strides as a community towards rapid rehousing, and yet some people visibly and consistently fail to access or succeed in housing. For those working each day to help solve this issue, … Read more

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Volunteer Center Staff member holding the Volunteer Center Heart logo in her hand

Navigating the Criminal Justice System During a Pandemic

Apr 26, 2021

 While community programs were put on hold over the past year, two of our programs at the Volunteer Center, Friends Outside and the Court Community Service Program managed to keep their doors open during the entirety of these chaotic times. As restorative justice programs meeting the needs of men and women either facing incarceration or coming out of incarceration– family connections, livelihoods, personal safety, and autonomy were at stake. 

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picture of members of the Quail Hollow Volunteer Trail Crew

National Volunteer Week 2021- Volunteers Restore the Common Good

Apr 23, 2021

As we close out National Volunteer Week, we want to ensure that every volunteer in our community has received our full gratitude. THANK YOU to each and every person who helped sustain our community and our organization in the last year.  Santa Cruz County has weathered so much and at every turn, volunteers have been … Read more

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Support the Volunteer Center With a Lookout Local Membership

Mar 19, 2021

We are incredibly excited to share that we have teamed up with Lookout Local. Here at the Volunteer Center we have been so enthused by the fresh new brand of journalism they are bringing to Santa Cruz County. If you haven’t had a chance to check out their online content we encourage you to take … Read more

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Pause & Reflection For the 2021 Human Race

Feb 24, 2021

Nothing embodies the power and joy of connecting our community for good like the Human Race Giving Campaign! Each February it begins with the kick-off of a small group of determined and hopeful dreamers who come together across business, schools, faith, neighborhoods, service clubs and nonprofits to unveil a new look and theme for artwork, … Read more

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February Kindness- Helping Seniors Stay Connected

Feb 16, 2021

We are rolling into our week basking in the love and kindness displayed by our community in February. Throughout the past week staff, volunteers, and community partners distributed hundreds of handmade Valentine’s to local seniors living alone or in care facilities. Started as a project on Martin Luther King Day 2021, community members designed and … Read more

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Join Us as a Volunteer at County-Wide Vaccine Clinics

Jan 27, 2021

UPDATE FEB. 5th The County of Santa Cruz has opened a weekly mass vaccination clinic at the Watsonville Fairgrounds, clinics at the old City Hall in Watsonville, and a special clinic at Dominican Hospital on Feb 18th to provide vaccines to the latest community tiers. We are supporting this effort by mobilizing non-medical volunteers to help … Read more

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Debris Flow Evacuations and How You Can Help

Jan 25, 2021

With the impending high winds and expected storms to come in the next few days, Santa Cruz County community members living in areas identified at risk are currently being asked to evacuate due to the threat of debris flow and mudslides. We are working with the County of Santa Cruz to help staff the evacuation … Read more

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MLK Day 2021- Actions to Choose Hope Over Cynicism

Jan 14, 2021

The constant churn of disconcerting news can leave one disheartened. As we watched the images of violence at our capital unfold across screens over the past week, it is easy to feel we have lost control or are falling out of step with the goal to transform our communities towards greater kindness, generosity and rightful … Read more

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picture of sentinel article

Adopt a Family 2020- A Huge Success!

Dec 18, 2020

We are closing out our week with immense gratitude. As of today all gifts have been delivered to our partnering agencies for delivery to families, we’ve swept and cleared out the Adopt a Family Warehouse and we are putting the closing touches on this program for another year. Thanks to the outpouring of generosity unmatched … Read more

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Give the Life Changing Gift of Literacy

Dec 10, 2020

53 years ago this fall we opened the doors to our Literacy Program and in that time our tutors and learners have worked together through earthquakes, floods, fires, refugee resettlements, recessions, immigration crack-downs and amnesty to build better lives for their families. We are infinitely grateful to the people who have supported this project with … Read more

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Adopt a Family Warehouse Opens Friday Dec. 4th

Dec 3, 2020

We are so grateful for all those folks who adopted or donated to support our 500+ families in the Adopt a Family Project. Your help means over 2000 parents, children, seniors, and independent teens will have a brighter holiday. If you didn’t get a chance to support the project and still want to lend a hand we … Read more

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Fostering Togetherness With Adopt a Family on #GivingTuesday & Beyond

Nov 26, 2020

Despite the challenges of 2020, the desire to welcome in the holiday season still tugs at our hearts. Many have chosen to hoist up their twinkling lights and decorations a bit early this year and all around it seems people are looking for a safe reprieve from the daily grind of social isolation. From our … Read more

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Mav-Rik delivering Thanksgiving

Not Gathering But Still Giving with Community Connection

Nov 23, 2020

For more than 13 years our Mental Health Program Community Connection has partnered with fellow agencies to host the South County Mental Health Thanksgiving. This annual event has traditionally brought over 300 mental health participants and their families together to connect, celebrate, and enjoy a meal the day before Thanksgiving. As with so many events … Read more

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Build New Traditions Through Family Volunteer Day- Nov 21

Nov 19, 2020

This Saturday, November 21st is Family Volunteer Day an annual tradition for my household. Finding a way to take part in festivities this year feels like the perfect way to hold gratitude for all that my family has despite the challenges of 2020. Volunteering has always been a favorite activity for our family. My children … Read more

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Adopt a Family Header

Joyful Giving- Adopt a Family This Holiday

Nov 6, 2020

We’ve made it to November in the age of pandemic life. Around us we see the signs of the holiday season taking hold with the endless supply of holiday baubles arriving on store shelves and despite the challenges of this year many are ready to turn their thoughts to the joy of the holiday season.  … Read more

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Volunteer at Food Distribution in Watsonville

Volunteers Are Needed To Distribute Food

Oct 30, 2020

As the holiday season approaches, many people feel a strong inclination to pitch in and express their generosity towards their community.  One great way to get involved is to volunteer time distributing food with a local food bank.   The pandemic has brought widespread financial hardship and food insecurity has grown to previously-unseen levels across … Read more

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