Outreach Activities 2020
Laurel Civic Association Polar Express Event
START partnered with Laurel Civic Association on December 18th to provide a wonderful Christmas experience to 42 families. Our members were very invested in this project both monetarily and volunteering of time. We donated 41 $50.00 Publix gift certificates so that each family could enjoy a prepared Christmas meal. We also made masks for the participants, assembled bells for the children, wrapped presents that were donated by the Toys for Tots program and handed out chicken dinners from Paradise Grill. Mr. and Mrs. Santa Clause and their two elves (all START members) handed out the bells and candy canes to the children.
VABI Holiday Tree Lighting
START is helping to spread the Holiday spirit by participating in the Venice Area Beautification, Inc. (VABI) Holiday Tree Lighting. Members have made ornaments and decorated a tree located in Blalock Park at the manatee statue near the corner of Nassau and Turin. The red and white themed tree lists on white balls all the organizations START has helped. The tree will be lite for viewing at night sometime after December 7th through January 2nd.
All Faiths Food Bank
On September 22, START volunteers filled backpacks at the All Faiths Food Bank for a couple of hours. In an assembly line, volunteers filled plastic bags with Kid friendly healthy snacks. For many children, these snacks keep them from hunger during the weekends when they do not receive school lunches.
START members donated $275 to Paradise Grill who has been providing fried chicken dinners to those in need on Fridays since April 17th. The Osprey Nokomis Chamber of Commerce matched our contribution. In late August, START members volunteered to help distribute the meals (in rain or shine) through December to support this great community service.
START members made over 300 masks in all sizes including cute toddler size. Masks were then distributed to Loveland Center, Our Mother's House, Paradise Grill, Quest Labs and Venice Hospital.
On March 2, 2020, START hosted a Blood Drive held over five hours. Several members generously donated blood to make the drive successful
All Faiths Food Bank
On February 19 and February 25, 2020, START members inspected, sorted, and packed food donations at All Faiths Food Back in Sarasota. Although the work was challenging, all the volunteers felt it was worth the effort to help out.