The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

April 9, 2014


National Volunteer week honors ways to help communities

— In West Virginia, we often measure our “wealth” by all the things we can generally do without.

But when it comes to real riches, we have those in abundance in our spirit and our willingness to help our neighbors.

This week is National Volunteer Week, and we’d like to take a moment to encourage folks to participate, whether it’s giving blood at a Red Cross center or donating time to a community organization.

In fact, the Raleigh County Community Action’s Red Cross blood drive that was scheduled for Tuesday has been rescheduled for today from noon until 6 p.m. at the Inez O’Brien Beckley Donor Center in Beckley.

There are hundreds of ways to help in the community, depending on your skills and the level of commitment you want to make.

“This is a big, big week because so many people need to understand that volunteerism is something that not only communities need in the City of Beckley, but the fact that we can get so much done if each individual understands that he or she has talents that can be used,” said Beckley Mayor Bill O’Brien.

“People have skills,” O’Brien added. “I think that most people don’t understand that their skills are so valued and here is a chance for those skills to be used, not only this week but throughout the year in many ways.”

In fact, the West Virginia Commission for National and Community Service serves as a clearinghouse for volunteer opportunities where you can match your skills and your interests via their interactive website.

At you can pick which county you want to volunteer in, and then select a specific organization to help from hundreds listed in its interactive volunteer console.

You can also select a volunteer opportunity by area of interest, from administrative and animal services, to counseling to health care to recreational categories.

The West Virginia Commission for National and Community Service operates on a three-year grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce Technology Opportunities Program.

So go ahead and pick the organization, place and time where you want to make your mark, and make a difference.

Your neighbors are counting on you.