Christmas Connection

The Christmas Connection, a collaboration of five social service agencies in Charles County, helps needy families during the holidays. New toys, nonperishable food and cash donations are needed. 301-645-1561, 301-843-0352 or 301-934-6602.

Christmas Caring

This St. Mary's County community services group needs volunteers to adopt needy families for gift giving. 301-475-4632, ask for Cynthia Brown.

Mike's Food Fund

This St. Mary's County group seeks volunteers to organize and deliver food baskets filled with items such as turkeys and canned goods. Donated toys, Christmas decorations and cash also need to be delivered. 301-863-7887.

Calvert County United Way Holiday Programs

Four United Way programs need support this holiday season. They are Safe Harbor, a shelter for abused women (410-535-1121); Project Echo, a shelter for the homeless (410-257-0003); Tree of Angels, which helps needy children (410-535-1883); and Operation Santa Claus, which provides gifts and holiday parties for seniors (410-495-4458). United Way of Calvert County, 410-286-0100.

St. Mary's County United Way Holiday Programs

These five charities under United Way need donations: H.O.P.E (301-737-2870); Big Brothers/Big Sisters (301-475-3930); Birthright (301-475-5333); St. Mary's Caring (301-862-4137); and St. Mary's Women's Center (301-862-3636). H.O.P.E. is an area-wide, church-supported group that meets emergency food and money needs. Volunteers are needed to adopt families for Christmas. Big Brothers/Big Sisters needs supplies to make crafts, as well as small, inexpensive gifts for children. Birthright is seeking new, unwrapped gifts for needy children. St. Mary's Caring needs food and volunteers to prepare meals for the hungry. St. Mary's Women's Center needs food, cash donations and toys for victims of domestic violence. United Way of St. Mary's County, 301-862-5577.

The following groups in Southern Maryland need volunteer help for a day, a week or on a regular basis. This listing of volunteer opportunities is published the last Sunday of the month. Nonprofit groups in need of volunteers should send e-mail notices to smextra@washpost.com or regular mail to Volunteers, Southern Maryland Extra, The Washington Post, 100 North Oak Ave., La Plata, Md. 20646.

Catholic Charities

Charles County Family Center is seeking short- and long-term volunteers to assist with office and food pantry duties. Great for seniors. Contact Susan Rye, 301-934-2582 or 301-753-4029.

St. Mary's Women's Center

The St. Mary's Women's Center will offer a 30-hour Advocate Training Program in October for anyone interested in assisting victims of domestic violence. The center offers legal assistance to victims of domestic violence in Calvert, Charles and St. Mary's counties, and needs volunteers in the following areas:

* Court Advocacy--support victims throughout the court process.

* Intake Specialist/Receptionist--assist in managing front office.

* Newsletter Editor/Writer--research, design, write and edit a quarterly newsletter as an information and marketing tool.

For information about these and other volunteer opportunities, call Alexis Rizas, deputy director/volunteer coordinator, 301-862-3636.

St. Mary's Hospital

Clerical volunteers:

* Chart assembler for a nursing floor, on an as-needed basis.

* Community relations, as needed.

* Education and training department, four to eight hours a week.

* Human resources department, four hours a day, seven days a week.

* Patient registration, four to eight hours a day, three to five days a week.

* Radiology, four to eight hours a day, two to three days a week.

* Systems analysis, four hours a day, two days a week.

Patient care volunteers:

* Ambulatory surgery, seven hours on Thursdays (6:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.).

For more information about these volunteer positions and to become a St. Mary's Hospital volunteer, call 301-475-6453.

Charles County Cooperative Ministry on Aging

Charles County Cooperative Ministry on Aging needs volunteers to deliver meals on wheels to homebound, elderly clients, and volunteer callers for a telephone reassurance program. For information, call the 24-hour voice mail line, 301-392-3438.

Disabled American Veterans

The Disabled American Veterans Pfc. John C. De Marr Jr. Memorial Chapter 36 is a nonprofit organization that helps, serves and dispenses information to veterans and their families. The chapter provides free transportation networking for veterans with appointments at VA hospitals in Washington or Baltimore, or at the Charlotte Hall Veterans Outpatient Clinic. Volunteer drivers are needed to make the network successful. If interested, call Richard Bamberger, 301-645-1971 in Charles County, or Thomas Grimes in Charlotte Hall, 301-884-7102, Ext. 5010.

Charles County Nursing and Rehabilitation Center

Charles County Nursing and Rehabilitation Center needs volunteers who can help seniors with sewing and cooking projects, mobility around the facility, sing-along and exercise programs, entertainment and music. Volunteers also are needed for office duties, gardening and to make friendly visits to residents. For information or to volunteer, call Bonnie Pelletier, 301-934-1900, Ext. 126.

Project Echo Shelter

Project Echo, a homeless shelter in Prince Frederick, needs volunteers to staff a shift or help provide a meal. Only four hours a month are required. For more information, call Lori Hony, 410-257-0003, between 9:30 a.m. and 6 p.m., or leave a message with the best time to contact you.

Boys' and Girls' Homes and Community Services

Boys' and Girls' Homes and Community Services is seeking donations of used vehicles, boats or motorcycles. Proceeds from the sale of these items will benefit abused and neglected youths. Towing is free. Your contribution is tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Call 301-587-9750, Ext. 3.

United Cerebral Palsy

The Southern Maryland chapter needs volunteers for its Buddy and Canister programs, fund-raising events, committees and office help. If interested, call Pat McDevitt, 301-863-8870 or 1-877-290-8679 toll-free.

American Red Cross

The American Red Cross of St. Mary's County is in need of volunteers to help answer phones, file and enter computer data. Instructors also are needed, as well as volunteers to help raise funds and work on blood drives. If you are interested in helping, call 301-465-3535 in Leonardtown or the Patuxent River office at 301-342-4100.

Spring Dell Center

Spring Dell in La Plata is looking for retirees to teach computer skills to individuals with disabilities. If you have computer skills and have a few hours a week to volunteer, call Mary DeGeorge, 301-934-4561 or 301-870-3758.

United Way Volunteers

United Way of Calvert County Volunteer Resource Center is seeking volunteers to meet immediate needs including: short- or long-term tutors for learning-disabled students; volunteers to assist an adult with cerebral palsy in craft activities; and volunteers to work with young children in a community early development program. Call Wendy Tankersley, volunteer coordinator, 410-288-0103.

Center for Abused Persons

The Center for Abused Persons (CAP) offers counseling to victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and child sexual abuse and provides 24-hour telephone crisis intervention. CAP needs volunteers in these areas:

* Outreach--Volunteers meet with victims being treated at a hospital to provide support. The hours are flexible, including evenings and weekends.

* Speakers Bureau--Volunteers provide educational presentations on domestic violence and sexual assault to community and civic groups. Flexible hours.

Training is provided. For more information, call Rosemary, 301-645-8994 or 301-843-1110.

CASA of St. Mary's

Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteers are needed to represent abused and neglected children before the juvenile court in Leonardtown. Volunteers come from all walks of life and have a variety of professional and educational backgrounds. No special experience is required, only a commitment to help children. Training is provided. CASA also needs volunteers to help in the office and with special projects and events. For more information, call Jennifer Jones, 301-373-3279.

Charles County Literacy Council

The Literacy Council provides one-on-one tutoring for adults in reading, writing, math and English as a Second Language. The council regularly recruits and trains volunteer tutors. All training and materials are free to tutors and students. To register for a volunteer workshop, call 301-934-9494, or write to P.O. Box 1964, La Plata, Md. 20646, or to jdtravlr@aol.com via e-mail.

Mentors

The Center for Children in Waldorf needs men age 19 or older to mentor at-risk teenage boys in Charles County. Mentors must have a high school diploma, be able to pass a criminal background check and be willing to contribute at least 20 hours a month for a long-term commitment. Training will be provided. To volunteer or for information, call 301-374-9442.

The Greenwell Foundation of Hollywood

Volunteers are needed to provide educational, recreational and job training opportunities for persons with disabilities. Volunteers also are needed for other programs, including therapeutic horseback riding. To volunteer or for more information on the program, call Rebecca, 301-373-9775.

Girl Scout Volunteers

Girl Scouting is committed to helping girls to develop confidence, determination and skills. Scouting promotes progressive and cooperative learning experiences, decision-making and progress evaluation. Girls can develop qualities of responsible citizenship and service that can help lay a foundation for responsible action as women. Leadership and decision-making skills are developed through specific activities, experiences with self-government and the influence of adult role models. If you can volunteer some time, call 301-893-1819 or 1-800-834-1702 for more information and a volunteer packet.

Calvert Meals on Wheels Drivers

Calvert Meals on Wheels needs drivers in all parts of the county to help deliver meals to shut-ins. If you can spare two hours or less, one day a month, call the Calvert Office on Aging, 410-535-4606 or 301-855-1170.

Civista Medical Center

Civista Health Auxiliary is looking for volunteers to assist at the medical center, especially in the snack bar/gift shop. Hours are flexible. If interested, call 301-609-4129.

Potomac Review

Help a few hours a week with editorial and publishing tasks for the Potomac Review, Southern Maryland's first literary quarterly, located in Port Tobacco. Office skills and an inquiring mind are prized assets; some work can be done at home. For details, call Eli Flam, 301-934-1412.

Adult Education Tutors and Other Volunteers

The Family Center of St. Mary's, a center for young parents with infants and toddlers, is looking for volunteers. This is an opportunity to acquire experience working with young adults. Volunteers must be able to work independently and have good oral and written communication skills. Call 301-737-1932 or stop by The Family Center, 47450 Lincoln Ave. in Lexington Park, across from the Patuxent River Naval Air Station.

Big Brothers/Big Sisters

In St. Mary's and Calvert counties, Big Brothers and Big Brother/Big Sister couples are needed. Volunteers must be at least 18, have access to a car and commit to regular contact with a child for a year. Four references are required, and a criminal history and background check will be conducted, as well as an interview. Volunteers also are needed to help with an annual bowl-a-thon, "Bowl for Kids' Sake." High school students may volunteer for this event and receive service learning credit. For more information, check the Web site at http://www.ameritel.net/bbbs or call 301-475-3930 in St. Mary's, 410-535-1115 in Calvert or 301-645-8414 in Charles.

Shelter for the Abused

The Calvert County Abused Persons program is seeking volunteers. The program needs volunteer advocates for Safe Harbor, a shelter for abused women and children. For more information, call 301-855-1075 or 410-535-1121.

Adult Day Care of Calvert County

Volunteers are needed for Adult Day Care of Calvert in Prince Frederick to work with frail elderly and medically disabled adults. This program is designed to enhance and maintain the health and independence of adults who might otherwise be placed in nursing homes because of illness, injury or frailty. Volunteer opportunities are varied and can accommodate the individual. Some of the most pressing volunteer needs include bus aides to help transport clients to and from the agency; personal care volunteers to assist with weekly manicures and facials; arts and crafts group leaders; and recreation aides to assist in therapeutic games, specialized sports and group social activities. Call 410-535-0133 between 7:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. for more information.

Calvert Hospice

Calvert Hospice needs volunteers to help care for dying patients in their homes, work with grief and bereavement support groups and support the hospice office staff. Free training is provided. Call 410-535-0892 or 301-855-1226.

Volunteers in Nature Education

Battle Creek Cypress Swamp Nature Center, Flag Ponds Nature Park and Kings Landing Park in Calvert County need volunteers in nature education. Opportunities for assisting park naturalists are now available. To learn more or to request a volunteer application, call 410-535-5327 and ask to speak with the volunteer coordinator.

After-School Activities in Calvert

Do you have a skill or talent to share with young people? Do you have an hour a week to tutor students having difficulty with reading or math? Do you have time to help with a club a teacher wants to sponsor? Do you have time to help others to volunteer at a school? Call Marianne Roberts, 410-414-5987.

Catholic Charities

Catholic Charities Calvert Family Center is seeking short- and long-term volunteers. A variety of duties is available, including clerical, pantry and yard sale assistance. Call Maureen Hoffman or Brenda DiCarlo, 410-535-0309.

Habitat for Humanity

The area chapter of the nonprofit Habitat for Humanity organization, which helps eliminate substandard housing, has just begun its sixth Habitat Home for a needy family in Calvert County. Volunteers are needed in many areas: construction, newsletter, office work, family selection workers, public relations, fund-raising, Bargain Barn volunteers and much more. For more information, call 301-645-4531.

Birthright of Prince Frederick

Volunteers are needed to answer phones, sort clothes, distribute donations and assist clients of Birthright, a group that offers education, support and referrals to needy women and their children. Training is provided for counselors. Call 410-257-1402.

St. Mary's County Special Olympics

Current as well as new volunteers are invited to attend a general orientation from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at the ARC Building, 24406 Three Notch Rd., Hollywood. High school students are also needed to volunteer for events which include the Spring Games. If you are interested and able to help, please attend. For more information and to register, call Mary Lu Bucci, county director, at 301-373-3469.