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April Community Impact Blog - Volunteer Connect

Community Impact Blog: Volunteer Appreciation Month

By Trista Stout-Walker, Vice President of Community Impact

April is Volunteer Appreciation Month and I am here to tell you that United Way of Southwest Alabama (UWSWA) has the best volunteers by far. In April we like to encourage volunteerism, and we are off to a great start. Just last week, three student groups from the University of South Alabama completed projects to benefit UWSWA’s partner agencies in Mobile County. These projects supported educational and essential initiatives at the agencies. The volunteers provided time and many hands to support each’s agency’s mission to offer health and human support services.

USA student volunteers at Goodwill Gulf CoastOne of UWSWA’s internal programs is a volunteer database called Volunteer Connect. This resource highlights all of the volunteer opportunities throughout our region. The site is utilized by local volunteers, UWSWA partner agencies, and local nonprofits. Last year, 3,303 volunteers found opportunities and provided 848 volunteer hours. This service is valued at $21,412.00. Additionally, 49 nonprofits have volunteer opportunities in various service areas.

Volunteer Connect is managed by UWSWA team members Katherine Pitman and Brad Martin. The University of South Alabama has a sister site called South Serves, which is operated by the Office of Inclusion and Engagement. Laurie Childers is the staff liaison that works directly with students, faculty, and staff at the university. UWSWA is grateful for the partnership and the university’s dedication to service. Social change requires many more fruitful partnerships and engagement from the community. I charge our readers to share your time, energy, and talents through volunteerism. It is greatly needed in southwest Alabama and Volunteer Connect is a great place to start. Please check it out and find your perfect volunteer match. Just visit