Whether you're new to the group or thinking about possibly joining an event, this is intended to help explain our group and events.
Everybody is busy and your time is valuable.
Succinct writing is not my forte, but I'll try to present relevant and applicable info to help everyone better understand this group, and some other aspects to improve your experience and help you get involved.
My hope is everybody has a positive experience from volunteering and can meet some new people (and make new friends). Thank you.
Some examples of topics that will be updated and further clarified include:
• reminder and elaboration on how to reduce meetup emails
• what is meant by "no host" and how can people still get involved and participate
• how to find other volunteer opportunities which may be geographically closer
• and maybe a few other small details to better improve everyone's experience (calendar, app, hosting)
• mobile app links, elaborate why descriptions are detailed, photos, holidays/weather/unexpected changes, rescheduling, etc.
I've been very busy...but will try to find time soon. This is a priority for me.
Why are there so many emails?
I'm sorry if anyone receives a myriad of emails. Meetup removed the option for organizers to disable reminders.
The daily emails can get annoying and overwhelming. Changing email preferences takes a few seconds. Trust me, everyone should do this.
Go to https://www.meetup.com/account/comm/SoCalVolunteers
...and set "Meetup reminders" to "Never"
Feel free to change other email settings to reduce emails.
For anyone using the Meetup app, in the lower right corner, click "Profile"
...then in the top right corner, tap the 3 vertical dots and then "Manage notifications" and then "Email Updates" and scroll down to tap SoCal Volunteers United and set "Meetup reminders" to "Never"
What does "no host" mean?
Why are there so many events?
Info for Parents
Addendum for Women in this Group
I'll have time tomorrow to write something...
This group is different.
I'm comfortable volunteering alone, but understandably, some may prefer events with many people.
Large get-togethers with several people are rare in this group, so honestly, other groups can better introduce you to new people. (http://www.meetup.com/find)
If meeting people is a top priority, try joining other groups. (http://www.meetup.com/find)
This group is not for everyone. It's disorganized, fragmented, and chaotic. Plus, I'm the worst or second-worst organizer on Meetup. :)
A few people have complained and criticized (e.g. "too many meetups," "nobody else signs up," "everything is too far," "not enough people go" etc.)..
C'est la vie.
Nevertheless, if anyone is sincere about volunteering, some "suggestions" are posted. Most have descriptions and instructions on how to participate. And some show photos of what to expect.
People live all over: Inland Empire, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Orange County, San Gabriel Valley, San Fernando Valley, South Bay, Westside, etc.
Finding volunteer events for everyone is challenging. If what is posted doesn't interest you, is too far, or doesn't fit your schedule—try searching on Google or other sites.
Even though there may not be a host who coordinates and manages members meeting one another, other volunteers (outside Meetup) should be there too. If other members don't sign up, people who volunteer at these events tend to be friendly, positive, and welcoming. I've gone to some events on my own and many people were cordial, so that's why I know this is a great way to meet quality people.
Do you know anyone who passionately raves about how yoga, Crossfit, vegetarian/vegan diet, or something else is life changing? Well, hopefully this doesn't sound preachy or like an aggressive sales pitch.
If you join(ed) this group, you probably are open to helping. If so, consider volunteering at least once. Maybe you won't like it. But maybe you'll be pleasantly surprised. You can decide if the proverb/adage is true, "It's better to give than to receive."
Despite horrible things happening in the world, people can make a difference.
"faith in humanity" (https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=%22faith+in+humanity%22)
"acts of kindness" (https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=%22acts+of+kindness%22)
"real life heroes" (https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=%22real+life+heroes%22)
"This is the beginning of a new day. You have been given this day to use as you will. You can waste it or use it for good. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever; in its place is something that you have left behind...let it be something good."
For any members who were in the previous group from 2010 - 2013: past photos are at https://www.facebook.com/socalvolunteers/photos_stream?ref=hl&tab=photos_albums
This group is not affiliated with, associated with, nor representative of any organization or charity—but acts as a messenger or bridge to introduce & connect people to volunteering.
If anyone participates, that's cool; and if anyone doesn't, that's fine too. No guilt, pressure, obligation, or expectation.
Anyone can obtain membership to a fitness club/gym or library. Some gym members may work out & exercise often, and some may never/rarely. Some library members may borrow books frequently, and some may never/rarely. Similarly, this group is a resource anyone can freely use or not.
Most announcement & reminder emails are turned off. Maybe more members would participate if notified about every event; however, bombarding people with emails will not happen in this group. If interested, check the site yearly, monthly, weekly, or whenever.
For the men: this is not a dating or singles group. Women are often contacted, complimented, hit on, and asked out—so please do not harass any ladies in this group. Thank you.
For the women: most events are during the day; however, a few occur at night. If so, after volunteering, please don't walk/leave alone. Yes, you all are strong & independent; nevertheless, please allow someone to escort you to your vehicle. Thank you.
Meetup sometimes sends superfluous emails.
Reduce emails by going to the top right of the page and click on "My profile" and then in the drop down menu, click on "Email and Notifications."
Most Meetup emails can be disabled via http://www.meetup.com/account/comm
For "Other Meetup Email," unchecking those boxes should help.
For anyone in Los Angeles County (e.g. Baldwin Park, Bellflower, Carson, Chatsworth, Claremont, Compton, Gardena, Hacienda Heights, Hawaiian Gardens, Hollywood, Inglewood, La Puente, Lancaster, Monterey Park, Palmdale, Pasadena, Pomona, Redondo Beach, Rosemead, Rowland Heights, Santa Monica, South Gate, Venice, or Whittier), these food distributions (http://www.lafoodbank.org/pantry-locator.aspx) may need volunteers.
For anyone in Orange County, maybe these food distributions (http://www.wastenotoc.org/#!providing-food-resources/c22p0) could use volunteers.
Gas is expensive, so here are activities that can be done at home:
Make a scarf, hat, or cool-tie (http://opgrat.wordpress.com/2010/08/05/scarf-hat-cool-tie-project-details-materials-size-patterns) for the troops.
Write thank you letters & cards (https://www.operationgratitude.com/writeletters/) to the troops, veterans, or military families.
Answer questions on an online forum (message board) for the Trevor Project (http://www.thetrevorproject.org/pages/volunteer) ("ask Trevor").
More volunteer opportunities can be found at:
For anyone who wants to help animals:
Cats - http://www.petfinder.com/animal-shelters-and-rescues/volunteering-with-cats
Dogs - http://www.petfinder.com/animal-shelters-and-rescues/volunteering-with-dogs
Shelters - http://www.petfinder.com/animal-shelters-and-rescues/search?