Alternative Reading Week: Niagara

Student Life & Community Experience

Alternative Reading Week: Niagara

Volunteer Projects, February 2014


Canadian Blood Services

Canadian Blood Services is a not-for-profit, charitable organization whose sole mission is to manage the blood and blood products supply for Canadians. Canadian Blood Services collects approximately 850,000 units of blood annually and processes it into the components and products that are administered to thousands of patients each year. They manage the OneMatch Stem Cell and Marrow Network whose mission is to secure, in an expeditious way, donors for Canadian bone marrow transplant patients and for patients abroad. In addition, they screen every donor and test each unit of blood or blood product collected for a variety of transmissible diseases and ensures that Canadian transfusion medicine research and development remains at the cutting edge.

Canadian Blood Services is committed to blood safety. In addition to the effective screening and testing processes, this pursuit of safety is reflected in every branch of its organizational structure and in each management and operational decision that is made.


Project Description: At this site, volunteers will be organizing the storage room, creating banners, and making buttons. Volunteers are also encouraged to donate blood.  This is a half-day project.


Coldest Night of the Year Walk

The Coldest Night of the Year is a fantastically fun, family-friendly walking fundraiser that raises money for the hungry, homeless and hurting in 64 communities across Canada on Saturday, February 22nd, 2014.  We will be assisting the Niagara community by helping at either the Niagara Falls or St. Catharines walk locations (location still to be determined).


Project Description: Throughout the later afternoon and evening, volunteers will assist with the event in various capacities.

Requirements: dress warm!


Habitat for Humanity

Habitat for Humanity Canada’s vision, mission and values are delivered by Habitat for Humanity affiliates that work in over 300 communities across Canada. Habitat for Humanity Canada affiliates select and prepare partner families for homeownership, manage the construction of Habitat homes, and hold partner family mortgages. They play a vital role at the local level by engaging community volunteers, securing resources, increasing the profile of Habitat for Humanity and raising awareness about the issue of affordable housing in their communities.

Project Description: Throughout the day, volunteers will take on the task of being a “ReStore Crew Member.” They will be providing customer service, completing general housekeeping tasks, assisting with merchandise pick-ups, assisting in loading and unloading merchandise from customer’s vehicles and ReStore vehicles, repairing damaged merchandise, assembling merchandise, and assisting in moving merchandise onto the sales floor.


Requirements: wear clothes that you do not mind getting dirty, steel-toed footwear, professional communication, and safety conscious.  Work boots can be provided if needed.


Heart & Stroke Foundation

The Heart and Stroke Foundation, a volunteer-based health charity, leads in eliminating heart disease and stroke and reducing their impact through the advancement of research and its application, the promotion of healthy living and advocacy. The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada is a federation of 10 provincial Foundations, led and supported by a force of more than 130,000 volunteers.

Throughout its history, the Foundation has relied on the generous donations of millions of Canadians. The Foundation receives no operational funding from government sources. In 2010, the Foundation invested more than $106 million into research, health promotion and community programs.

Project Description:  Throughout the day, volunteers with assist with the recruitment of local businesses and organizations to support our Big Bike Campaign (summer campaign), assist with obtaining prizes from local businesses to be donated to the Heart & Stroke Foundation for their annual golf tournament, putting sales packages together for our Big Bike Campaign, and preparing documents and materials for goal planning meetings with Big Bike Team Captains.

Requirements: strong professional and conversational English speaking skills.



Heartland Forest

Heartland Forest is a fully accessible nature experience with the goal of preserving and educating. This nature experience is driven by volunteers and donations and is a registered charitable organization. Their facilities include trails, fishing pond, picnic shelters, informative signage, butterfly garden, observation and rest stations, playground, animal carvings, barrier free mini-putt with nature theme and one of the largest tree-houses in Canada offering a panoramic view of the forest - the ramp alone is over 200 feet long! Natural features include, frog and turtle ponds, Carolinian forest which features vernal pools and a rich inventory of unique species of birds, trees, and amphibians.


Project Description: Volunteers will help with games, crafts, supervision for a group of young students (Wednesday), organize and create craft supplies for their upcoming Frogfest event (Thursday), and assist with facility set-up and clean-up (Friday).

Requirements: This project site is both indoors and outdoors, so volunteers must wear comfortable clothes that they do not mind getting dirty, and that are appropriate for the weather. It is recommended that volunteers wear boots.

Learning Disabilities Association of Niagara Region (LDANR)

The Learning Disabilities Association of Niagara Region (LDANR) provides resources and support to individuals who are affected by learning disabilities in the Niagara Region. They provide leadership in learning disabilities advocacy, research, education and services, and advance the full participation in society of children, youth and adults with learning differences.


Project Description: Throughout the day, volunteers will assist in putting together literacy and numeracy games/activities of varying levels, social skills games/activities, organizing literacy assessments for children in the program, organizing and putting together motivational workstation stations for each academic component of the program, assemble training packages for facilitators and volunteers.


Lincoln County Humane Society

The Lincoln County Humane Society is a charitable not-for-profit organization dedicated to the humane treatment of all animals; to alleviate their suffering and neglect, support the human-animal bond and foster an environment in which people respect all living creatures. They will provide safe refuge and compassionate care for animals. They will pursue workable solutions to the most urgent animal welfare issues of our community, which are animal overpopulation and homelessness. These solutions will emphasize the mutual benefits of bringing pets and people together. They will provide rescue and control as a lifeline to animals in need, as a necessary service to our community. They will encourage and provide for pet adoption, animal assisted therapy, pet care education, spay and neuter program and investigations of cruelty and neglect.

As a not-for-profit organization they operate these programs with integrity, in a financially responsible manner that secures a financially viable future for this organization with a strong commitment to fundraising and membership development.

Project Description: Throughout the day, volunteers will help organize their basement and sort the food stored there, and help to organize their garage.

Requirements: wear warm clothes (layers will be more beneficial) that you do not mind getting dirty.


Mayholme Foundation

The mission of the Mayholme Foundation is to promote and assist genealogical and historical research by collecting, storing and preserving historic documents and materials and to bring the public an awareness of the role our ancestors played in the history of our community.
Mayholme Foundation is a non-profit charitable group dedicated to the study and collection of family history, and to preserve the heritage of families in the areas of old Lincoln and Welland Counties.


Project Description: Volunteers at this project site will be helping to scan, catalogue, and organize historical material so that it can be used for historical and family research. This will involve identifying, assessing, scanning and photographing archival materials and museum artifacts so that they can be preserved and organized. 


Project SHARE

Created in 1991, Project SHARE was developed as a non - profit charitable organization in response to an increased demand for emergency services. Project SHARE provides emergency food and support services to residents of Niagara Falls who are living on or below the poverty line as stipulated by Statistics Canada. The programs are designed to create positive, proactive alternatives in order that people can help themselves and their families in times of crisis.

Project Description: Throughout the day, volunteers will assist with packaging tote bags, including labeling the fruit snacks, looping luggage tags on the bags and stuffing them with all the goodies. Also, volunteers with help set up the facility for their upcoming Coldest Night of the year walk.



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