‘Tis the Season for Giving!

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If you’ve got a little time to give, there are lots of ways to share it, right here in our own community. Napa Valley residents are a diverse, talented and very charitable bunch and whatever your talents or interests, there’s a volunteer opportunity just waiting for you.

The annual Season of Giving event supporting needy American Canyon families still needs volunteers. Volunteers are needed to pack and wrap food boxes this Saturday, Dec. 19 from 3–7 p.m. and organizers also need sponsors for the event. If interested in volunteering or supporting the Season of Giving event, contact Brian Farmer at 731-2148 or email him at bfarmer@farmersagent.com.

If you’re interested in helping out at the Napa Valley Food Bank, you can volunteer Mondays through Wednesdays, to help run the storehouse and stock the small store where low-income families come to access their monthly allotment of food. Earn some good karma points while helping folks who need a little help to make sure they have enough to eat, not just at the holidays, but all year long.

If you’d like to spend your time helping the environment, the Native Plant Society is always looking for volunteers who share their passion for native plant species. Even if you don’t know a lot about plants, they’re happy to share their knowledge with you, in exchange for your time and talents; whether on a monthly basis or just helping out with their bi-annual sales at Skyline Park.

Another way to benefit the environment by sharing your time is helping the Land Trust of Napa County restore habitat and remove invasive species. They have regular workdays on Saturdays, in addition to special trips to the Foote Botanical Preserve on Mount George and the Linda Falls Preserve. They’ll provide the tools, gloves, instruction and a snack. All you need to bring is water, clothes you don’t mind getting dirty, and close-toed sturdy shoes. Volunteers can even opt for a hike to the waterfall after each workday!

If you like helping animals, there are plenty of volunteer opportunities with the Napa Wildlife Rescue. Be on call to rescue injured and orphaned wildlife and transport them to care. Whether you’re interested in reuniting songbirds or re-nesting raptors, you’ll learn about Napa’s wildlife first-hand. You must be over 18 and have your own car. Training is provided.

If you love animals and you want to help kids, there’s a very special local program that’s helping kids with disabilities, called the Cornerstone Assisted Riding & Equitherapy (C.A.R.E.). Volunteers provide support and encouragement for the students and help take care of the horses. As a volunteer, you’ll attend ongoing trainings, beginning with orientations to the facility, session protocol, and safety procedures. Volunteers are also needed to help in the office with newsletters, fund raising and community outreach.