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Volunteering Can Help Make the Season Bright
The holidays are a season of giving and, while that includes gifts for loved ones, it also can include giving of your time for people you don't even know. At The Bensman Group, we schedule several group volunteer activities throughout the year.
The volunteer efforts so far this year have included working with:
Finally, we are working with the Chicago Sun-Times’ Letters to Santa program. Volunteers receive hand-written letters and pictures from Chicago-area children whose families can’t afford to put toys under the tree. The volunteers then buy and wrap the gift for the letter-writer and deliver it to the school or agency that serves the child.
- Bernie's Book Bank in Lake Bluff, which distributes new and used children’s books to underprivileged kids throughout Chicagoland. Volunteers help sort, sticker and pack quality books for at-risk children.
- Feed My Starving Children, a Libertyville-based non-profit organization that coordinates the packaging and distribution of food to people in developing nations. Volunteers hand-pack scientifically formulated meals for undernourished children.
- Friends of Lake Forest Library Book Sale. Volunteers help organize books, carry books for buyers, and work as cashiers for the book sale, which raises funds for the Lake Forest Library.
- The Northern Illinois Food Bank (NIFB), which helps combat hunger in 13 counties in northern Illinois. We have gone to the NIFB for the last several years to help inspect, sort and package food distributed to the hungry; the photo above is from our visit earlier this month. Almost 600,000 people in northern Illinois rely on food pantries and meal programs to help feed themselves and their families.
- Foodie 5K, a benefit run for the Northern Illinois Food Bank.
- Charity donation drive. Throughout the year, Bensman employees can make monetary donations to an area charity. This year’s recipient is the Lake County Haven in Libertyville, which empowers homeless women and their children and uses education, employment and life-skills training to help people move from homelessness to independence.
At The Bensman Group, we believe that volunteering brings employees closer together and gives us a chance to see each other outside the workplace. At the same time, it lets us make a difference in the lives of people who need a little help.
This is just a small sample of the kinds of volunteer opportunities available throughout the area. We encourage you to find an organization whose work you support and see if you can lend a hand. You will receive much more than you give.
Happy Holidays to all of you, from all of us at The Bensman Group, and best wishes for a happy and healthy New Year!