Seven Great Nonprofits to Get Involved with in Waterville

Life at Colby can be crazy— between academics, sports, clubs, and trying to squeeze in time to see friends, sometimes it feels like time just gets away from us. It can be hard to truly appreciate the good things we have in our lives when under constant stress. In high school, whenever I felt like I was getting lost or I needed to be grounded, I would volunteer at a few local nonprofits in my area to give back to my community, and the feeling of making a positive difference really calmed me. Now here at Colby, deep into midterm season and feeling on edge, I looked into volunteer organizations here in Waterville and found dozens of amazing programs. Here are just a few:

 

Hardy Girls Healthy Women: HGHW’s mission is that of female empowerment: they “take girls seriously and puts the power in their hands to challenge a society that ignores their brilliance.” They want girls to cause a ruckus and ask questions-- why are girls depicted this way in media? Why are boys and girls raised differently? Colby students normally participate in the Muse program, working with local middle schoolers once a week. To learn more about the program or get involved, click here.

Revitalizing the Energy in Maine: REM is a grassroots nonprofit that supports citizen volunteers to improve the quality of life in central maine.The organization has eight priorities: develop a vibrant economy, excel in education, protect human potential, promote arts & entertainment, beautify the environment, empower young people, build community, and expand fitness & recreation. To learn more about the program or get involved, click here.

Evening Sandwich Program: Since its start in 1990, this program has served over 730,000 meals to the hungry in the Waterville community. Hot, homemade entrees, several types of sandwiches, and deserts are made and served on a take-out basis with no questions asked. Volunteers may cook, clean, or serve the public. To learn more about the program or get involved, click here.

Waterville Humane Society: Their mission is to house animals until they find their perfect, forever home, and educate the community on responsible pet ownership. They advocate for the humane treatment of all animals, and have a no-kill, open admission facility. They’re current placement rate for pets is 97.5%! Volunteers can work specifically with the dogs, cats, or small animals, or sign up as a general volunteer to help around the shelter. To learn more about the program or get involved, click here.

Inland Hospital: Inland is an acute-care hospital that believes in putting the patient first in every way.  Volunteers help serve the hospital’s mission “to care for and serve our community.” A few areas where people can serve are in the gift shop, offices, pet therapy, housekeeping, community relations, and more. To learn more about the program or get involved, click here.

Alfond Youth Center: The AYC is the only club in the country to combine a YMCA and a Boys & Girls Club into one organization. Volunteers provide children with positive adult role models, and the hours are extremely flexible. Whenever you have the time, the AYC is happy to have you. Helping kids with homework, monitoring gym time, greeting visitors, and working in the mail room are just a few things that volunteers can do. To learn more about the program or get involved, click here.

Waterville Habitat for Humanity: The Waterville area branch of this international organization shares the same vision as every other: a world where everyone has a decent place to live. This branch serves the communities of Albion, Belgrade, Benton, China, Clinton, Fairfield, Oakland, Rome, Smithfield, Unity, Vassalboro, Waterville, and Winslow. Volunteers can build or provide food on work days, work in the organization’s ReStore, or serve on committees. To learn more about the program or get involved, click here.

 

With so many great organizations to volunteer at in Waterville, it’s honestly hard to pick just one! I know that we all have a lot going on here at Colby, but many of these nonprofits are really time flexible— whether you can do an hour a week or an hour a month, they will be happy to have you. It’s time we give back to the community that has given us so much.