Lifting Up Westchester, formerly known as the Grace Church Community Center, has been providing support and shelter for the area’s neediest people for more than 30 years. The White Plains-based nonprofit organization has a database of more than 500 volunteers and 2,000 volunteers who assist in various efforts each year.
“There are many ways to volunteer here,” says volunteer and Community Outreach Manager Nancy Inzinna. “It depends on the individual and their schedule.”
Volunteers assist with food-drive efforts in a number of ways. Parents and children, for instance, can bake cookies at home and bring them into one of two Lifting Up shelters.
Corporate and college volunteer groups, such as those at Westchester Community College and Ameriprise, recently took part in Lifting Up’s “Support and Serve” program, in which groups of individuals underwrite the cost of a dinner at the shelters, purchase the food and come in to help serve the food to residents.
Corinne Weldon started out by assisting in food service at the shelters six years ago and recently began manning information booths at volunteer fairs and getting the word out about Lifting Up’s many offerings. The 30-year-old Pleasantville native says giving back has been an eye-opening experience. “People don’t think these problems exist around here,” she says, “but they do, and it’s very real.”
Get Started: Visit www.liftingupwestchester.org/volunteering to download an application. There are no prerequisites; training is not required; and time commitment varies by opportunity.
Similar Ops: Check out the Food Bank for Westchester, Furniture Sharehouse, and HOPE Community Services.