You can make a difference!

Make a Difference Day 2014

Margaret Mead said, “A small group of thoughtful people could change the world.”

This year on October 25, join volunteers across the country for Make a Difference Day, a national day of community service. Decide what’s important to you and share your passion with others, whether you volunteer on your own, with your family, or as a team.

Here are just some of the ways you can make a difference in Hawaii:

On Oahu:

* During the fourth week in October, join a road-side rally in front of schools to celebrate Make a Difference for Animals Week. In 2013, 24 schools, clubs, and organizations held signs and waved to support animals.

* On October 25, 8 am to noon at Kalaheo High School, join students, parents, alumni, and community members to clean up and beautify the campus.

* On October 25, 9 am to noon at Hakipu’u Stream in Kaneohe, join Hui o Ko’laupoko for a community workday. There is an easy 15-minute hike into the valley; there are no restrooms at the work site. Please RSVP and ask for meeting location.

* On Saturday, October 25, 8:30 am to 12:30 pm at Kapolei High School, join E Ola Pono Ma Kapolei for a community work day.

* On Saturday, October 25, 10 am to 1 pm at the Kaka’ako Waterfront Park in Honolulu, join Hunger Free Kaka’ako and feed the homeless families.

* On Saturday, October 25, at the Assistance League Hawaii Thrift Shop in Honolulu, donate a new book to their Children’s Book Drive and help promote literacy in Hawaii.

On the Big Island:

* On Saturday, October 25, 8:30 to 11:30 am at the Waimea Parker Ranch Old Cattle Pen YMCA Park and Rotary Pavilion in Kamuela, help to cleanup and beautify the grounds and re-start the youth soccer field.

On Maui:

* On Saturday, October 25, 8:30 am to noon at Waikapu Cemetary, join the West Maui Mountains Watershed and Malama Maui Nui to clean the cemetery, clear away the brush, and haul away rubbish. Please RSVP to volunteer@cwdhawaii.org or outreach@westmauiwatershed.org.

On Kauai:

* On Saturday, October 25, 7:30 am to noon at the Main Pavilion at Lydgate Park in Lihue, join the Friends of Kamalani and Lydgate Park to clean up the park. On this workday, please bring a water bottle, work gloves, sun protection, and shoes.

* On Saturday, October 25, 8 am to 12:30 pm at the Kauai Humane Society in Lihue, help fill the Gomez Galley’s Pet Food Bank.

If you’re looking for year-round volunteer opportunities, the Aloha United Way’s “Get Connected Hawaii” website lets you find something that matches your interests.

If there are no opportunities nearby that match your interests, you can become an ambassador for your passion. You can reach out to community organizations or schools with your idea, or plan your own neighborhood event. There is a helpful “Make a Difference Day Youth Toolkit” to help everyone find their passion and make a difference in their community.

How will you make a difference today?

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