Coming Together, Working Together, Making a Difference
Volunteering For Oakland (VFO) a 501(C)3 non-profit, is a dynamic all-volunteer group formed in 2009 with the goal of taking Action with projects, events and programs serving our community as a whole. Based on our volunteers expressed interest in addressing greater Oakland’s needs, VFO works toward improving Education, Healthcare, the Urban Environment, and Voter Registration.
We don’t “re-invent the wheel”-VFO innovates with new projects as well as adds value to the mission of partner non-partisan groups, local social agencies, and like-minded governmental programs. Our initiatives are shaped by input to and from our Board members, all long-time Oakland residents. We continue to explore new projects, inviting fresh ideas and collaboration from the community. In our actions, we are supported by a variety of donors and work with community oriented participants. Our projects, past and present, include the following:
EDUCATION, SCHOOLS AND YOUTH
- Fall Volunteer Fair for Oakland Public Schools and Youth Programs (2009-16): bringing together volunteers and 30+ organizations at a “one-stop sign-up” venue with programs that match the individual volunteer’s interests, schedules and abilities.
- Dictionary Day (2012-16): Bringing Dictionary to 3rd graders in the Oakland Public Schools, focusing on under-resourced schools.
- Assisting with OUSD enrollment events (2010-15)
- School supply drive (2009-10)
- Children’s book drives (2010-11). This led to the formation of Friends of the Oakland Public School Libraries.
- Publicized, organized and managed Affordable Care Act/Covered California enrollment events at libraries, churches, and community colleges (2011-16). Recruited licensed and Certified Insurance Agents and Educators, signing up 1,000+ individuals and families for health insurance.
- Greening Oakland Homes (2009-12): organized Green Fairs to educate Oakland residents on home energy upgrades and conservation, with participation by local Green businesses, non-profits, the City of Oakland, PG&E, StopWaste.org and others.
- Sponsored neighborhood workshops with the City of Oakland and Energy Upgrade California to educate Oaklanders about residential energy-saving retrofits and programs.
- Starting in 2016, a program began to register voters preparing for the June primary and then the November general election. Partnering with the Oakland League Of Women Voters expanded this nonpartisan program. Volunteers staffed sites at festivals, supermarkets, clinics, churches, schools, music events, and other places where non-registered voters were likely.