The Junior League of Kansas City has donated more than $14 million and 2.2 million hours of time since its founding in 1914. Spearheading these efforts are the nonprofit organization’s now 1,400 female members, all of whom are committed to their volunteer work and to encouraging others to donate their time as well. Their sheer numbers allow the ladies to form 700-on-700 pickup basketball games and to spread out across the community to get a pulse on current issues in need of attention—currently, children’s nutrition and fitness. To help support their efforts, these stalwart altruists host fundraisers throughout the year. Since it began in 1988, Holiday Mart has helped to raise more than $8 million for Kansas City community projects.
Water.org understands the contradictory nature of one of the world's most abundant resources. On one hand, nearly 70% of Earth is covered with water, while on the other, the amount of clean, potable, fresh water is only 2.5% of that amount. In some places, water flows freely from taps, while in others, the closest water source is miles away. In these places, people have to walk to a public well, and carry home as much water as they can for cooking, drinking, and bathing, or they resort to using contaminated surface water. This is where Water.org steps in.
Co-founded by Matt Damon and Gary White, Water.org works to alleviate water scarcity through regular interventions in the most remote areas of the world. In Ethiopia, Ghana, Haiti, and Bangladesh, volunteers work with invested local partners to drill wells, deliver water to households, build spring-fed pump systems, and educate people on proper hygiene and disease prevention.
See how Groupon helps you discover local causes and lend a helping hand to projects big and small at the Groupon Grassroots blog.
Started by a group of driven University of Kansas medical students, JayDoc exists to provide health care for the uninsured and underinsured residents of Greater Kansas City and support medical students with opportunities to apply their learning. The clinic mitigates the cultural, financial, and linguistic barriers that often prevent people from receiving quality health care by providing a mix of no-cost preventive and urgent care with onsite interpreters. The staff of volunteering licensed physicians and medical students provides primary care and prescription medications, prenatal care, and HIV screening, with a special emphasis on nonemergency urgent care, diabetes, and women's health care. The team offers its experience to every patient who arrives at the clinic and does not ask for insurance or citizenship status. Patients may also be connected to other resources such as dental care and free legal advice provided by LawHawks from the University of Kansas School of Law after meeting with a social-services volunteer.
Reach Out and Read Kansas City supports early literacy development in children from low-income families by distributing books during medical examinations. Every year children from birth to 5 years old visit pediatric doctors for vaccinations and checkups. Doctors partnering with Reach Out and Read Kansas City talk to families about the importance of reading aloud to children and give them an age-appropriate book to take home. Volunteers also distribute pamphlets and gently used books in waiting rooms for children to read and take and, when possible, read aloud to children while they wait to model techniques for parents. Reach Out and Read Kansas City gives books to more than 28,000 children every year though partnerships with 49 area clinics. The books mostly go to underserved families and come in 25 languages to reach a wide variety of communities.
On a typical day at the Turner House Children's Clinic, 35–40 children receive care such as physicals, same-day appointments for sick children, or follow-up appointments. The clinic uses a patient-centered home-practice model to ensure that all its patients receive the highest quality of pediatric care possible.
Turner House serves approximately 4,000 patients each year, with services that include preventive and urgent or acute care, prescription-medication programs for uninsured patients, and bilingual staff members to help serve Spanish-speaking families.
Harvesters' Project STRENGTH program empowers participants with education about how to make the most of their food resources to prepare healthy and tasty meals. Participants in Project STRENGTH attend nutrition classes where they can learn how to effectively budget for food and create affordable, appetizing meals for their families. At the end of each class, participants receive a bag that contains a week's worth of groceries so they can practice their new skills.