March/April Newsletter 

Like us on Facebook
National Volunteer Week
AmeriCorps in Action: Experience Corps Baltimore City
Spotlight On: Volunteer Washington County

Important Dates


Baltimore, MD
9:00 am - 4:30 pm

Timonium, MD 

9:00 am - 3:00 pm

Power Up! Volunteer Management Conference

Out of the Ordinary Volunteer Opportunities


The Driving Force Volunteers 
(Howard County)
Make a difference to a Howard County senior as a volunteer driver. Click here for more information.


Save the Bay Day
(Anne Arundel County)
Help beautify Lake Waterford Park and protect the Chesapeake Bay! Click here for more details.
Bras for a Cause
(Wicomico County)
Decorate a themed bra, and enter it into the Women Supporting Women Competition. For more information, click here.

Happy National Volunteer Week!


As we all enjoy the brighter days of spring, the GOSV is well underway in continuing the tradition of celebrating service in Maryland. This year, we received over 180 nominations for the 2012 Governor's Service Awards!  This increase is a testament to the number of individuals who make a commitment to giving back to their communities. Thank you to all who serve and to those who take the time recognize volunteerism!


The GOSV is also continuing to develop our outreach through social media with our new Facebook account. Like us on Facebook and join us for Inspirational Mondays, where we highlight service and encourage Maryland citizens to volunteer. You can also join us on Twitter for information on other GOSV and service happenings.


In Service,


The Governor's Office on Service and Volunteerism

National Volunteer Week


Looking for a fresh, new, inexpensive way to recognize volunteers at your organization? Want to increase your online presence? Then recognize your volunteers through social media and on your website with these simple tips.

Use social media to recognize your volunteers.Printed newsletters and bulletin boards are great tools but they can't match the number of people reached by social media. Recognize your volunteers by posting a thank you note on your organization's Facebook page, mentioning their names on Twitter, or creating a pinboard of your volunteers on Pinterest. Include photos on Flikr or even a thank you video on YouTube! Whichever social media site you use, your volunteer is sure to notice.

Utilize online tools from other websites. Did you know that some organizations, like Points of Light, have online recognition tools? Check out Points of Light's Tribute Wall, where you can highlight the service of an outstanding volunteer. In the Baltimore area, Volunteer Central does a Volunteer Spotlight on their website and newsletter. You can submit your individual or group here. Or, send the GOSV a story of your volunteer's service and you may find it on our Stories of Service page.

Move your "Volunteer of the Month" post online. In addition to writing about your "Volunteer of the Month" in your newsletter, why not highlight them on the homepage of your website? This will show your volunteer that you appreciate their service AND demonstrate to site visitors just how much you value the service of your volunteers!

AmeriCorps in Action: Experience Corps Baltimore City 


Experience Corps Baltimore City is an AmeriCorps program that focuses on education and public health intervention. Older adults serve in Baltimore City public elementary schools providing in-school and classroom assistance. In the most recent service year, 80 AmeriCorps members (ages 55 years and older) helped over 1,900 children. 


Experience Corps members also recruit community members to volunteer by sharing their experiences with students. One volunteer, Richard Przybszewski, saw firsthand how Experience Corps benefits children through his experience with a third grade class at Highlandtown Elementary Middle School during the 2011-2012 service year.  Read his story below:



About 20 years ago when I decided to buy a home, I was attracted to the Highlandtown/Canton area because of its rich Polish immigrant history. Over the years, a transformation has taken place in this southeast Baltimore neighborhood.

As a volunteer Team Leader for Experience Corps at Higlandtown Elementary/Middle School, I have seen firsthand the Latino population growth in southeast Baltimore, where the changing demographics are most evident in neighborhood schools. Recently I was asked to read in Polish a short story to two classes at the school for the "Read Aloud" program organized by Experience Corps.

When I accepted the invitation to read aloud in Polish I didn't know how third graders and ESOL students would feel about a stranger coming into their classroom and speaking some strange words. I was lined up with two other readers, one read in English and the other in Russian. I read my piece in Polish, and afterwards I was impressed by how well the students behaved, how well they listened, and how interested they were in different cultures.

What I thought would be a quick reading and exit turned into a mini Polish lesson, with the students asking me how to say words in Polish. I noticed some were even taking notes. Students asked me many questions like "what was it like growing up with a Polish name?" and, "what is Polish food like?"

Through this experience I was reminded how our students are like sponges, soaking in new bits of knowledge, eager to learn when we treat them with respect. It was a fun and educational experience for this Polish man.

Spotlight On: Volunteer Washington County


To celebrate National Volunteer Month in April, Volunteer Washington County is promoting volunteerism in some unique and interesting ways. Research indicates that teens and adults are more likely to volunteer if they feel welcomed and if they know others who volunteer. Accordingly, VWC has begun posting pictures of nonprofit leaders and community volunteers on its Facebook page. VWC will also run a full-page ad in the Herald-Mail newspaper highlighting area nonprofits and one volunteer from each organization.  

In honor of National Volunteer Week, VWC invited guest bloggers of all ages to submit an entry on some aspect of volunteering. Individuals can write about why they want to volunteer, or tell the story of an inspiring volunteer to encourage community members to get involved in a service project. If their blog is selected, it will be posted on the home page of the VWC website under "VWC News" during National Volunteer Month. Additionally, to encourage individuals to reflect on the importance of volunteerism, Volunteer Washington County is holding a "Vote Your Quote" contest. Visitors to the website are encouraged to peruse a list of service-related quotes and either send an email or comment on Facebook about their favorite quote.

VWC is excited to provide ways to promote and celebrate volunteerism in Washington County. For more information on how you can participate, visit VWC's website at