Visitors to the 2022 GIVE Gathering, held Sept. 29 at Central Middle School (CMS), learned ways to give back to their community, plus how to find support if they need it.
Organized by the Eden Prairie Schools Community Education (EPCE), Eden Prairie Community Foundation, and the City of Eden Prairie, the annual event was a “one stop shop” where families could learn about volunteer opportunities as well as available resources. Kaleidoscope Teens offered additional planning support.
“Traditionally, this has been our community’s volunteer fair,” said Molly Patil, EPCE’s director of adult and community engagement programs. With so many partner organizations at the event, she said, “This year, we decided to add a resource component to maximize their engagement.
“Not only were community members able to learn about ways to give back, but they were also able to learn about all the wonderful programs and services available to those who call Eden Prairie home,” Patil said.
Patil said this free public event helps “foster volunteerism in our community and support our local non-profits and social service providers.”
Staff and volunteers from 35 local organizations, including social service providers, civic and service clubs, non-profits, schools and additional programs that enhance the lives of residents, were on hand to greet and chat with the approximately 135 attendees.
Visitors stopped by information booths, mingled with fellow Eden Prairie-ites, talked with community leaders, and even had the opportunity to meet two fuzzy, friendly, trained assistance dogs from Helping Paws.
Eden Prairie students were on hand to give tours of the newly renovated CMS facilities, and The PROP Shop collected cold-weather gear for its Winter Coats for Kids Program.
In addition to publicizing opportunities to members of the public, Patil says, “Participating organizations had the opportunity to network and learn about some new ways we can collaborate with each other prior to doors opening to the public.”
Patil said she received positive feedback about the event from both attendees and partner organizations hosting information booths. She said, “Those tabling and representing their organizations shared that attendees were very engaged, asked thoughtful questions, and were eager to learn more about the work they do!”
How can I learn more?
Learn more about volunteer opportunities and available resources in the 2022 GIVE Gathering resource guide, EPCE’s family resource program’s database of local programs and services, or download the EP Help on Hand booklet, a comprehensive guide to programs and services available to those who live, work, or attend school in Eden Prairie.
You can also check out the Eden Prairie Community Foundation’s Resource Hub.
2022 GIVE Gathering participants included:
- Academy for Young Leaders
- Bloomington-Eden Prairie Meals On Wheels
- City of Eden Prairie Water Resources
- Eden Prairie Community Band
- Eden Prairie Community Foundation
- Eden Prairie Library
- Eden Prairie Local News
- Eden Prairie Schools Sharing Inspiration Volunteer Program
- Feed My Starving Children
- Friends of the Eden Prairie Library
- Helping Paws, Inc.
- Kaleidoscope Teens
- League of Women Voters of Minnetonka-Eden Prairie-Hopkins
- Let’s Go Fishing — Eden Prairie
- Mission Animal Hospital
- Onward Eden Prairie
- Open Hands Foundation / Hope House
- PROP Food Shelf
- SEWA – Asian Indian Family Wellness
- Team 2502 Talon Robotics
- The PROP Shop
- The Redemption Project
- True Friends
- Wings of the North
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