Monday, November 29, 2010

You Can Help!

The holidays are fast approaching and we still need donors to help 1,000 people in need as part of our All Wrapped Up program. Our deadline to adopt a family or individual is this Friday, December 3. If you'd like to be matched with a specific person or family please fill out our online form today! You can fill out the form here.

If you'd rather donate a gift card (or cards) to be distributed to those who do not get “adopted,” you may donate cards in $25 increments to stores such as Shoprite and Target. You can also donate cash and we'll buy the cards.

In the last four years we've always been able to help everyone who has requested help. Let's not let anyone down! Thank you in advance for anything you can do.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Give Good for the Holidays

Holiday shopping doesn't have to be extravagant or stressful. Our “Do Good, Feel Good, Give Good” program lets you make a donation in someone's name, instead of giving a conventional gift, solving the age-old question ‘what do you give a person who has everything’?

Gift-givers can choose a gift that may have special meaning for the recipient or that is of special interest. Your donation to the Volunteer Center can purchase a gift card for groceries for a needy family, support home repairs for elderly persons in need, recruit and train a mentor for a child who has suffered from abuse, and more. The gift will be acknowledged with an elegant, customized card sent to the person being honored, along with a brief description of the program or service the gift supports.

Gift donations can be purchased on-line by 12:00 noon on Monday, December 21st will be delivered by December 25th.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Mom Helped by Holiday Gift Program Pays It Forward

Through the Volunteer Center of Bergen County’s All Wrapped Up Holiday Giving Program, low income families and single parent households, as well as elderly, homeless and physically or mentally disabled adults and teens are matched with people from the community who are willing to donate needed items.

Three years ago Jovannie, a recently divorced, single mother of three, found herself in the challenging position of having to provide for her family alone; she needed a job and office skills training. While taking computer and workforce training courses at the Women’s Rights Information Center,
Englewood, one of the Volunteer Center’s participatory agencies, she learned of the All Wrapped Up Program and through it was able to provide gifts for her children that Christmas. “I was worried—how would I make Christmas happen this year? It was very stressful and frightening to be on our own, with very little money,” she said. “I was so grateful and felt so blessed that there were people in the world that cared enough to help us during a very bleak time.”

Today, Jovannie is the coordinator of the Women’s Rights and
Information Center’s Shared Housing Project and coordinates the All Wrapped Program for 30 families in her program. She is hoping generous donors will step forward to help these families as she herself was helped three years ago.

“I am so blessed now, I’m working, my children are with me, we have a brighter future,” she says. “I tell the families in the Shared Housing Project to never give up hope, that there are people who will help them get over the rough patches, like the generous donors from All Wrapped Up who helped my family.”

You can watch more about Jovannie's story on NY1 here.

Those who wish to help a family or needy person this holiday season should click here to fill out a request form. Deadline for registrations is December 3, so that all gifts can be delivered and distributed by the holidays. Gift cards from Shop Rite, Pathmark and Target are also welcome, as are donations of cash which can be sent to the Volunteer Center of Bergen County,
64 Passaic St, Hackensack, NJ 07601.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Make It Matter This Holiday Season

This year, make your giving go farther by making sure your gift matters. Here are some unique ideas to indulge your giving spirit.

  1. You know that November/December is the make-or-break season for retailers, but did you know that charities rely on our holiday giving spirit, too? End of year giving is big business in the non-profit world, so make a donation now to your favorite charity and get your tax deduction for 2010.
  2. We get lots of calls to volunteer on Thanksgiving and Christmas, but these slots fill up quickly. Don’t forget that nonprofits need your help every day of the year, so make some calls to offer a meal the day after Thanksgiving, or the day after that, or after that…etc.
  3. Make magic at your local food pantry by turning $1 into $8! Many food pantries have access to special food pricing programs, so when you give cash your gift is multiplied significantly. Find a great food pantry here:
  4. Many of us resolve to give back even more next year. There’s no better time than now to start researching and to begin the application process. Find the right volunteer job at our database by clicking here:

What are you going to do to make it matter this holiday season? Let us know in the comments below.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Good Play = Feel Good.

Our All Wrapped Up holiday giving program will be the fortunate recipient of funds raised through a volleyball tournament. Mahwah High School Guidance Counselor Stacey Mandel organized the tourney with students and faculty, and 8 charities were chosen to receive funds raised.

Each charity was assigned a team. Our team, comprised of enthusiastic students and teachers, played their hearts out for us and we are so proud. We don't know the amount raised yet, but the spirit of giving fared very well!

If you'd like to adopt a family or an individual through our All Wrapped Up program, click here.

Pictured above are the Volunteer Center All-stars.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Volunteer Manager’s Roundtable: Resolve to Make 2011 a Great Year for Your Volunteer Program

Please join us for a lunchtime discussion on volunteer management. This month we’ll share ideas about our “resolutions” to effectively engage volunteers to solve our community problems. We’ll also have time to network with other volunteer managers and to share our challenges and ideas.

Date: Tuesday, November 30
11:30 AM - 1:00 PM
Course Leader: Staff
Volunteer Center of Bergen County, 64 Passaic St., Hackensack
Registration Fee: $10 (FREE for Member Agencies)

Register Here!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Good News Grants

Several of the Volunteer Center programs are recent (and proud!) recipients of grants.

Chore Service: Provident Bank, Hackensack Rotary Club

VIPS and Mentoring Moms jointly: New York Giants Foundation, TD Bank Charitable Foundation

Mentoring Moms: PNC Foundation, St. Elizabeth Church (Wyckoff), Zonta of Bergenfield

Volunteers in Protective Services: TJX Foundation

Bergen LEADS: BD, Bergen Community College, Bergen County’s United Way, Englewood Area Community Foundation, Hudson City Savings Charitable Foundation, PSEG Foundation, Russell Berrie Foundation, United Water Foundation

Community Volunteer Services: State Farm Insurance, Palisades Educational Foundation

General Operating Support: Community Chest of Englewood, Englewood Rotary Club, Kreisler Manufacturing, Leonia Community Chest, Munch-Bilheimer Foundation, Redlich Horwitz Foundation and Sony Electronics.

Each of these grants is being put to good use in fulfilling our mission, and we welcome additional support! The Volunteer Center must raise over $500,000 every year from corporations, foundations and individuals to keep our outstanding programs in operation.

As the end of the year approaches, so do appeals from nonprofits. We hope you'll keep the Volunteer Center in mind! We do tremendous good for our community and will put your donation to good use.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Shopping for a Cause!

While shopping online this holiday season, you can help the Volunteer Center with every purchase. Through, a percentage of every purchase you make will go to the Volunteer Center, or another charity of your choice. There are over 600 stores to shop from, including favorites like Target, Barnes & Noble, Gap, Amazon, Travelocity and much more. Just lick the link to and fill out the simple registration form. It only takes a minute to register and $5 will be donated to the Volunteer Center right off the bat if you sign up and shop within 45 days. Please follow the directions on the iGive website to learn more about how you can help.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Show Me the Money

Advanced Grant Writing will be the next offering of the Non Profit Training and Resource Center of the Volunteer Center of Bergen County, on Tuesday, November 16 from 1:00 pm to 4:00. This is an intermediate-level class, and participants are expected to have some grant writing experience.

In the past several years charitable giving has reached an all time high of $306 billion, with foundation grants accounting for 12% ($38 billion) of that total. However, the significant loss of wealth in the stock market coupled with slow economic recovery indicate increased competition for fewer foundation dollars. This workshop will address challenges of grant writing and how to make your application stand out. Course leader is Elizabeth Levine, executive director of ECQ Group, a non-profit consulting group in New York City.

Pre-registration and pre-payment of the $35 fee is required; deadline for registration is November 12. For more information or to register click here or call (201) 489-9454, ext.114.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Make Holidays Shine!

The Volunteer Center of Bergen County's "All Wrapped Up" holiday giving program kicked off today. We've received requests to help 3,500 people in need and are now matching them with donors -- like you! - who want to help. Requests are for such basic items as winter coats, warm sweaters, slippers, or books and toys for children. Gift cards for supermarkets and discount department stores are on everyone's list, too.

To help, sign up online. We'll match you with an individual or family and email their profile back to you within 48 hours.

Individuals, families, civic groups, corporations and business associations are encouraged to "adopt" an individual or a family in need. Call us at 201-489-9454, ext. 118 (Debbie Emery) if you need more information.

Times are tough, so please do whatever you can to help our neighbors right here in Bergen County!