As unprejudiced advocates for the equal and humane treatment of all dogs, the all-volunteer organization A Rotta Love Plus (ARLP) works to approach issues faced by Rottweilers and pit bulls. Volunteers conduct public outreach and awareness programs that repair the reputation of these breeds, including a therapy dog program with at-risk youth, spay and neuter initiatives, owner education and training, and foster-based rescue and rehoming. Along with pit-bull and Rottweiler adoption and foster-program services, ARLP hosts fairs where pet owners can take their dogs for free spay or neuter services, microchips, and vaccinations from low-cost, high quality mobile vet teams. ARLP volunteer trainers also lead eight-week obedience courses for pit bulls and Rottweilers and hold basic dog-safety programs for children.
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For nearly a century, Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota has provided medical care for children along with clinical and surgical services. With 380 staffed beds at two campuses, the hospitals care for more than 125,700 kids each year. Their pediatric services subscribe to the most current research models and employ innovative practices to maximize the quality of care it provides.
Children’s cultivates a positive and welcoming environment for patients by providing kid-friendly diversions as well as resources for their families. Kids can take part in programming from Star Studio, the in-hospital TV channel, and parents can turn to interpreter services or parenting professionals for assistance.
Children’s will soon complete state-of-the-art renovations on both campuses, which will include private patient rooms, expanded surgery and triage centers, and an internal Ronald McDonald House. The additions will foster an open and airy atmosphere that provides comfort for patients, with designs that integrate science, art, and nature.
The organization’s Parent Education and Discharge Instructions (PEDI) project trains nurses to educate parents on follow-up-care procedures after pediatric open-heart surgery, including situational training on the recovery process and educational booklets on at-home care. By improving postoperative instruction, Children's Heartlink hopes to reduce infection rates and other complications, and prevent return hospitalizations. Children’s HeartLink has already launched the PEDI project at one Indian hospital and plans to expand to two other hospitals in India, including Innova Heart Hospital in Hyderabad, as well as to share its materials with other hospitals online.
House of Charity's food center serves free, nutritious meals to those experiencing homelessness as well as individuals who are working but unable to afford food. The organization is one of the only free public-meal programs in Minneapolis that operates 7 days a week, 365 days a year. On an average day of operation, about 300 people eat at the food center, and nearly all meals are prepared from scratch to reduce expenses while increasing nutritional value. On any weekday, women and children accompanied by a parent can eat breakfast at the food center, and all are welcome for lunch. The center also serves a public brunch on weekends. Five to 10 volunteers operate the food center and rely entirely on grants and charitable contributions for financial support.
Gardening Matters supports local gardeners and advocates for their needs, working toward the creation of successful, sustainable, low-cost gardens across the Twin Cities. By sharing information, providing access to education, and connecting gardeners to each other, Gardening Matters aims to increase food production at a community level and influence positive behavior changes.
Gardening Matters works closely with the Local Food Resource Hubs project. Through this network of local residents, neighborhood organizations, local businesses, and the city office, gardeners can receive seeds, seedlings, and low-cost workshops. Also, the network acts as a support group from which gardening newcomers can draw tips on growing and cooking and on composting their own produce.
Last year, local food hubs distributed more than 13,000 seed packets and 15,000 seedlings to gardeners. With the addition of a tool lending library, Gardening Matters hopes to continue improving food security and access to fresh produce.
Aegis Foundation sprouted from the mind of one man, but it has endured thanks to the tireless efforts and unyielding belief of a passionate board of directors. Always an avid volunteer, William Panzarella was working with a Minneapolis organization to help at-risk youth when they were forced to close due to lack of funding. Undaunted by the setback, William took up the challenge, establishing Aegis to help raise money for other organizations that provide safe, supportive environments for youth. Like cooties at a summer camp, the enthusiasm quickly spread, and Aegis soon found itself with chapters in Minneapolis, Chicago, Atlanta, and Los Angeles. Beneficiaries of Aegis’ efforts include organizations such as One Heartland, Project Footsteps, Reclaim, and other foundations that strive to help youth via disease prevention, vocational training, and education.