Feeling gorged and self-indulgent after Thursday's food fest? Work off some of those calories by helping out in your community.
Between now and the end of the year, many local charities and other nonprofits ramp up their activities and need additional volunteers. Nonprofit staff, however, offer up one caveat: This time of year, volunteer generosity can sometimes exceed need, especially at small organizations. But even if you can't fill a spot right away, connecting with an organization now could lead to volunteering in the new year.
Here are some groups that need help. If none of these fulfill your do-gooder desires, look for part two of this story next week, when we'll run more holiday volunteer opportunities.
D.C. Jewish Community Center (1529 16th St. NW, 202-518-9400, Ext. 565) needs more than 1,000 volunteers for the 19th-annual Dec. 25 Community Service Day. Volunteers will work on a variety of service projects at 60 area sites from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. An $18 fee helps cover supplies. To register, go online at www.dcjcc.org/volunteer.
Georgetown University Hospital (3800 Reservoir Rd. NW) and George Washington University Hospital (900 23rd St. NW) are each seeking volunteers during December for caroling and decorating. George Washington also invites musicians to play in its lobby. To volunteer at Georgetown, contact Sara Kish at email@example.com or 202-444-5545; to volunteer at GW, e-mail Julie.Horner@gwu-hospital.com or call 202-715-5310.
Howard University Hospital's Border Babies Program (2041 Georgia Ave. NW, 202-865-4564) seeks volunteers for holiday decorating and tree trimming Monday through Wednesday, and for a tree lighting ceremony Thursday. On Dec. 16, volunteers are needed to deliver food baskets and gifts to families. To register, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call Davene White.
Martha's Table (2114 14th St. NW, 202-328-6608), a nonprofit that runs children's programs and provides food to individuals and families in the District, needs people to help with food preparation and sorting clothes throughout the month of December. To sign up, e-mail email@example.com or call 202-328-6608.
Single Volunteers of the District of Columbia (www.singlevolunteers.org/dc/) has several holiday projects, including these two: Men are needed Tuesday, 6-9 p.m., to decorate the Audubon Naturalist Society's Woodend mansion in Chevy Chase for its holiday fair; on Saturday, volunteers are needed to be docents during the annual Scottish Christmas Walk Weekend in Alexandria. Information on more events and a sign-up is online.
The Washington Home and Community Hospices (3720 Upton St. NW, 202-966-3720) needs volunteers for various holiday tasks and events throughout December, including tree trimming (today-Dec. 3), weekly Thursday evening concerts, the home's annual memorial gathering (Dec. 6), gift wrapping (Dec. 14-20), gift delivery (Dec. 25) and preparation for a pre-New Year's party (Dec. 30). To sign up, contact Barrington Scott at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-895-0104.