Holiday volunteer opportunities available


Hunter Finerty, Staff Reporter

As winter holidays approach, many people enjoy volunteering around the area to help the less-fortunate.

Throughout De Soto and surrounding areas, there are many viable opportunities for students and their families to volunteer and give back.

During the month of December, Harvesters Community Food Network hosts a Holiday Workshop at Oak Park Mall in Overland Park. Families can sign up to come in one-hour increments to pack boxes of food for families in need around the holidays.

It costs $10 to pack a box in order to cover the price of the food involved, and a family or group can collaborate on a single box or pack boxes separately.

Volunteers of any age are welcome, but those under 16 must have parent supervision. Sign-ups are open to volunteer throughout the rest of December and are linked below.

Each year, the city of Shawnee sponsors Snow Squad, a volunteer opportunity to help those who may not be able to shovel their own driveways.

Some who live in the city of the city may not be able to shovel the snow from their driveways due to age or disabilities, or they may be financially unable to clear the snow. Snow Squad strives to help these groups safely clear the areas around their homes.

After signing up, volunteers will be contacted to shovel snow at a home within a 20-mile radius. Volunteers will be contacted only after three or more inches of snow have fallen and roads have been plowed, in order to ensure the safety of shovelers.

Snow Squad is looking for individuals, families or groups to shovel driveways for those who cannot do so themselves. Sign-ups are also linked below.

Kansas City-based organization Phoenix Family hosts an Adopt-a-Family program each year during the holiday season.

Upon signing up, volunteers will be assigned a child, family or senior citizen to purchase gifts for. They will be provided with a list of items requested by the family or individual, and sponsors can choose to purchase as much or as little on the list as they like. Gift cards are also acceptable to be given.

Gifts are due at the Kansas City office on Dec. 18. If a sponsor is unable to deliver at that time, a Phoenix Family volunteer can be arranged to pick them up at a convenient location.

Sign-ups to adopt a child, family, or senior are linked below, along with more information about the program.


Harvesters Holiday Workshop sign up:

Snow Squad sign up:

Adopt-a-Family sign up:

Adopt-a-Family more info: