The Santos Great Bike Ride for Charity



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The Santos Great Bike Ride for Charity is one of Perth, Western Australia’s premier cycling events. Celebrating 10 years in 2014, the ride has 3 routes, a 10km family Ride, 53km Challenge Ride and 96km Ultimate Ride taking in the beautiful Swan River. It was started by the Rotary Club of Perth as a fundraising ride for St John of God Health Care and more recently St John of God Horizon House project.

The St John of God Foundation works to raise funds in response to identified needs of people and communities which are not met by traditional means or government funding. The Foundation contributes to many hospital developments in local communities and to Social Outreach services and cancer research.

“VolunteerLocal has been fantastic in helping to manage our [300] volunteers.” – Claire Levett, Campaign Coordinator at the St John of God Foundation

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One of these initiatives is the St John of God Horizon House, which provides accommodation, care and intensive support to young people aged 16 to 22 who are vulnerable, homeless or at risk of homelessness.

“The most recent house that we opened provides support to homeless pregnant girls,” says Claire Levett, Campaign Coordinator for the St John of God Foundation. Residents are supported during pregnancy, preparing for childbirth and in the months following childbirth until they are able to find stable, independent living arrangements. Levett adds, “In two years, we have seen the birth of 39 babies.”

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Each year, The Santos Great Bike Ride is a tremendous opportunity for the St John of God Foundation to raise awareness about the important services they provide, while bringing together the community for a day of fun and fitness. With over 4,000 participants and 300 volunteers, it’s no easy undertaking.

“Last year was the first time using VolunteerLocal and it has made my job so much easier,” says Levett. “Before, we had hard copy forms that people would send back and we would allocate their role. Now, volunteers can select the exact role and time they would like, saving on confusion and database entry.” Less time managing individual volunteer schedules and more time advocating for services and programs to assist at-risk youth in Western Australia? What a ride!

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Des Moines Music Coalition



Whether it’s a soulful woman’s crystalline croon as her hands dance across the keys of a wurlitzer piano, or the lyrical honesty of a frantically poetic acoustic guitar player, his heart illuminated in the yellow glow – there is something about live music that electrifies the night.

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Artists like these live among us – and sometimes, they are hidden in plain sight. But thanks to the Des Moines Music Coalition (DMMC), an organization focused on cultivating and supporting Iowa’s music economy, performers in central Iowa have plenty of opportunities to showcase their hard work. One of these events is right around the corner: DMMC’s Little BIG Fest, an annual music festival which features roots, singer-songwriters, bluegrass, jam, world, blues, jazz, and soul music in Des Moines.

“VolunteerLocal makes it so easy to organize an event.” – Christopher Ford, Program Manager at the Des Moines Music Coalition

Angela Lee, Becky Migas and Jillian Sievel are three of the volunteers behind this year’s Little Big Fest. Photo cred:


“Little BIG Fest contributes to a growing culture of support for local artists,” says Christopher Ford, Program Manager at the Des Moines Music Coalition. “It’s an opportunity for people to come together to celebrate some of the great music that’s being created in our community and to show love for those individuals who are creating our culture.”

The festival traditionally takes place in November, with its location changing from year-to-year. “As with all DMMC events, local bands are heavily featured,” says Ford. “Though bands from around the U.S. also perform at the event.”

While the location, date and line-up may change each year, one thing never does: happy volunteers. If you’re looking for a free pass to see and hear some local talent, or perhaps just to feel a few of those invariably awesome “altruistic-fuzzies,” sign-up for one of the last remaining shifts at this year’s Little BIG Fest on November 20th and 21st.

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Variety, the Children’s Charity

Sign up to Volunteer at the Beer, Wine & Food Expo!


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Variety, the Children’s Charity is nonprofit organization that seeks to improve the lives of underprivileged, at-risk and special needs children throughout Iowa. Although this organization coordinates a number of “fun”draising events throughout the year (including Telethons, golf tournaments and an annual Black Tie Dinner), Variety is perhaps known best for their Bikes For Kids program, which awards qualified children with a brand new bike, lock and helmet (plus some training on bike safety and maintenance!).

Variety – The Children’s Charity. Sarah Walker presenting kid for bikes. Photo cred:

This Friday, community members and advocates have another opportunity to support the great work that Variety does for at-risk children across Iowa. The upcoming Beer, Wine & Food Expo, presented by Hy-Vee, has partnered with Variety to produce an event for the uniquely altruistic, yet cuisine-savvy Iowans across the state.

“The Expo will be a melting pot for culinary enthusiasts throughout the Midwest, offering the opportunity to discover the latest cooking techniques from local and regional culinary experts,” says Tiffany Egli, the Director of Activities at Variety.

“A portion of the event’s proceeds will be donated to Variety, the Children’s Charity.” – Tiffany Egli, Director of Activities at Variety, the Children’s Charity

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In addition to the palate-refining, culinary expo, this event will also feature a VIP Shopping Experience on Saturday from 11am-1pm – tailored to the serious wine/beer connoisseur. Attendees for this event will get to sip some fancy wine, chat with chefs and local craft brewers, and learn a few tips to brighten up that Wednesday night casserole – all while supporting a great cause.

“Our success for this (and all our events) would NOT be possible without our dedicated volunteers,” says Egli. “Volunteering for Variety is the difference you make in a child’s life.”


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