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Dear World,

Have I told you about Hands On Bay Area? I am enthusiastic about this organization for some very practical reasons.

Many people feel they don’t have time to volunteer, because agencies often request a commitment of X hours per week or month, and they sometimes want a commitment to volunteer six to twelve months. Some people aren’t sure what they want to do in terms of volunteering, while others simply enjoy variety, and commiting to several agencies isn’t feasible with life’s other demands.

Hands On Bay Area provides a creative solution that helps individuals and agencies connect. HOBA is a liasion with more than 300 community-based organizations that provide a range of services; HOBA sets up projects with these agencies. Volunteers can choose from a variety of events, from helping maintain the Heritage Rose Gardens, sorting donated goods at Sacred Heart, creating teaching kits at Resource Area For Teachers, serving food to the homeless, or reading to children who are residents at a domestic violence shelter. (And this is just a small sample!) Volunteers can choose to participate as their schedules permit. If a person has lots of free time, she can sign herself up for as many events as she wishes. When her schedule becomes overbooked, she can stop until life calms down. The orientation process takes less than an hour, after which volunteers log on to their own accounts to sign up for (or remove themselves from) projects.

In addition to their usual events, Hands On Bay Area coordinates one day a year devoted to over 75 service projects to raise awareness of their program as well as funding for the next year. I have registered to work on this day. HOBA calls this massive undertaking a serve-a-thon. By registering I have set a goal to raise funds as well as provide my physical assistance on October 15. This post is my shameless plug for your support. If you are interested, please take a moment to visit my donation page to pledge.

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