One Bus One Cause: At A Glance

Volunteer Center buses have been rolling through the Los Angeles community at a steady pace to bring volunteers to service sites to address specific needs in that area.

One Bus, One Cause projects started in January 2012 as a way for volunteers to remain involved with service after the annual Volunteer Day in September. Projects introduce volunteers to a variety of service areas that individuals can go back to on their own at a later date.

Visit the links below to see photos, video, and media from our previous One Bus, One Cause service days:

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2017

Saturday, November 11, 2017 – Tom Bradley Global Awareness Magnet

Tom Bradley Global Awareness Magnet UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Woodlake Elementary School)
More than 50 Bruin volunteers joined the UCLA Volunteer Center on November 11 at Tom Bradley Awareness Magnet to complete some vital painting and beautification projects that were started on UCLA Volunteer Day. Tasks included retouching a colorful USA map on the school’s playground, adding college logos to basketball courts, and painting some lively birds and butterflies in the school hallway. Volunteers also helped clean up the campus and surrounding hallway areas.

Saturday, October 21, 2017 – Woodlake Elementary School

Woodlake Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Woodlake Elementary School)
On Saturday, October 21, UCLA volunteers attended the first One Bus, One Cause project of the new academic year! The UCLA Volunteer Center took a bus of 40 volunteers to Woodlake Elementary School to assist in the school’s Halloween celebration. Volunteers decorated booths, set up carnival games, and created a haunted house for the school’s festive Monster Bash. With the help of UCLA Volunteers, Woodlake Elementary School hosted an exciting festival and raised money for their school.

Monday, May 29, 2017 – Memorial Day at Cal-Vet

Memorial Day at Cal-Vet UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Memorial Day at Cal-Vet)
UCLA Community members celebrated Memorial Day at the Veterans Home of California by helping complete murals in the memory care wing of the facility and sanding and staining new benches. The beautification projects completed will provide a welcoming environment for the Veteran residents of the facility. The Veterans Home of California in West Los Angeles (Cal-Vet) is the largest veterans home in Los Angeles County, providing long-term health care for approximately 400 residents.

Saturday, May 20, 2017 – Girls Play Los Angeles Sports Day

Girls Play Los Angeles Sports Day UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Girls Play Los Angeles Sports Day)
On May 20, UCLA volunteers joined 300 girl athletes, 20+ coaches, parents, and Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks staffers at Girls Play Los Angeles Sports Day. The event was coordinated by Girls Play Los Angeles, a program focused on building girls’ self-esteem by participation in sports in under-served communities around Los Angeles. Volunteer roles included registering athletes, managing the sport clinic, and assisting with lunch. The all-day event also featured fun activities, free prizes, inflatables, snacks, and live music.

Sunday, May 14, 2017 – Foster Mother’s Day

Foster Mother's Day UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Foster Mother’s Day)
Hosted by Foster Care Counts at the Willows Community School in Culver City, Foster Mother’s Day is designed to honor and celebrate foster families with a day full of activities, entertainment, food and fun. Foster Mother’s Day volunteers assisted with event set-up, guest hospitality, and a range of activities including kids’ carnival games, family book area, pop-up spa, family photo booth station, and more.

Saturday, April 29, 2017 – LA River Cleanup

LA River Cleanup UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (LA River Cleanup)
The Great LA River Cleanup is the largest urban river cleanup project in the nation. Covering 51 miles of the LA River, and coordinated by the Friends of the LA River, this effort required thousands of volunteers spread across several locations for each weekend the event took place.
On April 29th, the Center and thousands of Angelenos assisted in this massive effort. UCLA Volunteers helped remove trash from the Golden Shore Marine Reserve in the hopes of attaining a cleaner, safer, LA river habitat. UCLA worked in collaboration with LA 2024 and learned about additional volunteer opportunities from their team!

Saturday, March 11, 2017 – Gledhill Elementary School

Gledhill Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Gledhill Elementary School)
Gledhill Elementary and its Math/Science Technology Magnet provide a safe, inviting, and educational environment for K-5 students in North Hills. Volunteers completed painting projects at the school and interact with the school’s staff, parents, and students.

Saturday, February 25, 2017 – Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Operation Gratitude)
Operation Gratitude is a Chatsworth-based nonprofit that supports active U.S. service members by sending them care packages. The UCLA Volunteer Center partners with Operation Gratitude throughout the year to contribute over 3,000 hand-written letters from Bruin students, staff, faculty, and community members. On February 25, Bruins, along with several hundred community volunteers, screened letters, created paracord bracelets, and helped assemble nearly 10,000 care packages for U.S. Service Members abroad.

Saturday, January 28, 2017 – North Valley Caring Services

North Valley Caring Services UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (North Valley Caring Services)
North Valley Caring Services (NVCS) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that serves the residents in the Northeast San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles. Since their humble beginnings as a soup kitchen more than three decades ago, they have continued to adapt their services to the changing needs of the community. On January 28th, 2017, One Bus, One Cause volunteers, including members of UCLA Parents’ Council, repainted the exterior of North Valley Caring Services buildings.

2016

Saturday, December 3, 2016 – Strathern Elementary School

Strathern Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Strathern Elementary School)
On December 3, the UCLA Volunteer Center hosted the last One Bus, One Cause for the year at Strathern Elementary School. The school places a large focus on building its School-wide Positive Behavior Plan, which focuses on being safe, respectful, and responsible. UCLA volunteers working alongside the school principal, vice principal, and a handful of enthusiastic teachers helped complete a vine and flower mural, transform two dozen hallway poles into bright yellow pencils, and refresh two murals on the outdoor handball courts.

Saturday, November 19, 2016 – Esperanza Elementary School

Esperanza Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Esperanza Elementary School)
Esperanza Elementary is a K-5 public elementary school in the Westlake region of Los Angeles. This school was rated by the Los Angeles Times as a “most effective value-added school” based on California Standards Testing improvement. One Saturday, November 19, volunteers painted projects at the school and interacted with the school’s staff, parents, and students.

Sunday, October 23, 2016 – AIDS Walk LA

AIDS Walk LA UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (AIDS Walk LA)
The Volunteer Center, in partnership with UCLA Residential Life, participated in AIDS Walk Los Angeles, a walk-a-thon fundraiser that raises money to combat the AIDS epidemic. The funds raised from AIDS Walk Los Angeles benefit more than 20 service organizations, including AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA), an AIDS service organization dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by HIV disease, reducing the incidence of HIV infection, and advocating for fair and effective HIV–related public policy. AIDS Walk Los Angeles makes it possible for APLA to provide urgently needed food, dental care, safe housing, and much more to people with HIV/AIDS who also face poverty, hunger, and homelessness.

Saturday, October 22, 2016 – Mark Twain Middle School

Mark Twain Middle School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Mark Twain Middle School)
Mark Twain Middle School is dedicated to promoting the green initiative and sustainability through the creation and maintenance of its on-site garden. The schools’ faculty and students have become “master gardeners” in the community with the development of the garden curriculum project. On October 22, two dozen volunteers visited the school to follow up on some projects that were started on UCLA Volunteer Day in September. Volunteers had fun painting a variety of college logos, include one for UCLA, on the middle school’s multiple basketball court backboards and adding a fresh coat of bright paint to some of the schools surrounding walls.

Saturday, August 6, 2016 – Family Resource Fair, Hollywood Recreation Center and Park

Family Resource Fair UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Family Resource Fair, Hollywood Recreation Center and Park)
On August 6th, the Office of Assemblymember Richard Bloom, in partnership with the Youth Policy Institute and After-School All-Stars, hosted a free Family Resource Fair at the Hollywood Recreation Center and Park. The resource fair was an opportunity for families to interact with various nonprofit and government organizations and learn about programs and services offered in their neighborhoods. Dozens of families also received backpacks and school supplies to help prepare their students for the upcoming school year. UCLA Volunteers helped register families, distribute food and water and facilitate interactive activities with children and their parents.

Monday, May 30, 2016 – Veterans Home of California, West Los Angeles

John R. Wooden High School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Veterans Home of California, West Los Angeles)
On this One Bus, One Cause, student and alumni volunteers celebrated Memorial Day with Cal-Vet residents by painting a new mural on one of the residential floors, playing indoor games, and assisting residents with a special bbq lunch. This project was a collaboration with the UCLA Operation Mend Undergraduate Association, which works to support the efforts of Operation Mend and local veterans organizations. The Veterans Home of California in West Los Angeles (Cal-Vet) is the largest veterans home in Los Angeles County, providing long-term health care for approximately 400 residents.

Friday, May 6, 2016 – John R. Wooden High School

John R. Wooden High School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (John R. Wooden High School)
John R. Wooden High School is a credit recovery high school located in Reseda. The school, named after Coach John R. Wooden, aims to help students get on track to getting their high school diplomas, offering them an alternative learning environment which enables them to become responsible members of society. This One Bus, One Cause was a partnership with UCLA First Year Experience and the Common Book program. Volunteers and JRWHS students participated in a writing workshop led by Writer’s Den and several outdoor interactive activities led by and UCLA Recreation’s Outdoor Adventures staff. All activities centered around themes found in this year’s UCLA Common Book, Roxane Gay’s Bad Feminist.

Saturday, April 30, 2016 – My Friend’s Place

My Friend's Place UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (My Friend’s Place)
On Saturday, April 30 the UCLA Volunteer One Bus, One Cause program visited My Friend’s Place, a resource center and safe haven for homeless youth in the Hollywood area. During the project, volunteers organized and restocked the hygiene closet and pantry, created birthday cards for the youth, and helped with general spring cleaning. Volunteers also sorted new donations in the center’s clothing closet including some items that the volunteers brought themselves to donate to the shelter. Volunteers were also given the opportunity to tour My Friend’s Place’s facilities and learn more about the center’s mission and impact.

Sunday, April 10, 2016 – Second Street Elementary School

Second Street Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Second Street Elementary School)
Second Street Elementary School, founded in 1865, is a public elementary school in Boyle Heights serving 700+ students in Pre-K through 6th grade and was a featured site for UCLA Volunteer Day 2015. On April 10th, 42 volunteers set out to complete painting projects within the school to revitalize and repaint 2 hallways and stairwells. Volunteers were responsible for the taping, priming, and painting of doorways and hallway walls of the first floor in the main school building.

Sunday, February 28, 2016 – Food Forward

Food Forward UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Food Forward)
The mission of Food Forward is to rescue fresh local produce that would otherwise go to waste, connecting this abundance with people in need, and inspiring others to do the same. By recovering excess fruits and vegetables from private properties, public spaces, farmers and wholesale markets, and partnering with direct-service agencies, Food Forward provides food to over 100,000 individuals per month. On this One Bus, One Cause project, Bruin volunteers visited Franklin Canyon Orange Grove to harvest nearly 3,500 pounds of oranges, which were then delivered to local organizations for distribution, including Seeds of Hope, Project Angel Food, and The Cooking Laboratory.

Sunday, February 21, 2016 – Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Operation Gratitude)
Operation Gratitude is a volunteer-run organization which sends care packages filled with snacks, entertainment, hygiene and hand-made items, plus personal letters of appreciation, to New Recruits, Veterans, First Responders, Wounded Warriors, Care Givers and to individually named U.S. Service Members deployed overseas. Since its creation, Operation Gratitude has sent over 1.3 million care packages. The Volunteer Center regularly partners with the organization to contribute about 3,000 hand-written letters from Bruins in care packages each year.

At this project, One Bus, One Cause volunteers assisted with registration at Operation Gratitude’s care package Assembly Day. In addition, volunteers participated in the assembly of packages, preparation of materials, and creation of paracord bracelets, among other tasks.

Sunday, January 23, 2016 – Los Angeles Regional Food Bank

LA Food Bank UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Los Angeles Regional Food Bank)
On January 23, 45 UCLA students, staff and parents boarded a yellow school bus and headed out to the LA Regional Food Bank. By the end of the day, volunteers had sorted, inspected and repackaged 39,000 lbs. of donated fruit for those in need. The mission of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank is to mobilize resources to fight hunger in the Los Angeles community. According to their website, one in six, or 1.6 million residents of Los Angeles, face food insecurity on a regular basis. The Food Bank gives hope by distributing 59 million pounds of food annually to over 700 agencies across the region.

Monday, January 18, 2016 – Al Wooten Jr. Heritage Center

Wooten UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Al Wooten Heritage Center)

On Monday, January 18, 2016, millions of people across the country honored the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. by participating in a nation-wide day of service. For their part in the day, approximately 50 students, staff, and alumni participated in the UCLA Volunteer Center’s One Bus, One Cause service project at the Al Wooten Jr. Heritage Center in South Los Angeles. Led by Volunteer Center and Wooten Center staff, volunteers built several planter boxes, planted fruits and vegetables, and painted benches in the Center’s outdoor playground area. The planters will allow the Wooten Center to provide healthy snacks for youth while also educating them about nutrition and growing their own food. In addition, several current undergraduate student volunteers met with a room full of youth from the Wooten Center to answer questions about attending college, life in the residence halls, and academics.

2015

Thursday, November 26, 2015 – Westside Thanksgiving (VA Greater Los Angeles Healthcare System campus)

Westside Thanksgiving UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Westside Thanksgiving )
Westside Thanksgiving, a community dinner and holiday celebration, is one of the largest Thanksgiving Day events in Southern California. Since 1982, the event has welcomed thousands of guests each year, offering hot meals, clothing and blankets, immunizations, haircuts, medical consultations, and family entertainment for homeless individuals, veterans, students, and low-income families from across the region. The event is entirely staffed by volunteers and all items are donated by community members. UCLA volunteers performed kitchen duties, clothing distribution, and guest services.

Saturday, November 21, 2015 – Newcastle Avenue Elementary School

Newcastle Avenue Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Newcastle Avenue Elementary School)
Newcastle Avenue Elementary School is located in Reseda, CA and serves 378 students in grades K-5. On November 21, UCLA community members and friends completed UCLA Volunteer Day painting projects.

Friday, November 20, 2015 – Welby Way Charter Elementary School

Walgrove Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Welby Way Charter Elementary School)
Welby Way Charter Elementary School is a public school located in West Hills, California, a suburb of Los Angeles County, in the western portion of San Fernando Valley. The school serves over 800 kindergarten through 5th graders. Welby Way is on the cutting edge of academic technology and is also proud to be the only LAUSD elementary school that, from 2012 to 2014, hosted an introduction to computer science event called Scratch Day.
On November 20, volunteers will completed painting projects including basketball backboards and murals on the playground floor.

Sunday, November 15, 2015 – Walgrove Elementary School

Walgrove Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Walgrove Elementary School)
On Sunday November 15, UCLA community members, along with Walgrove parents and students, visited Walgrove Elementary School to complete UCLA Volunteer Day tasks including painting pavilion poles, laying mulch and doing maintenance in the community garden of the Walgrove Wildlands. Breakfast, lunch, and transportation from campus were provided for all volunteers.

Walgrove Avenue Elementary School is a K-5 school that serves 350 students in Venice, and is a Title I Achieving School with a strong parent community. The elementary school hopes that all students will experience success through academic growth and achieve their maximum potential.

Sunday, November 8, 2015 – Baldwin Hills Elementary School

Baldwin Hills Elementary SchoolUCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Baldwin Hills Elementary School)
Baldwin Hills Elementary School for Advanced Studies and Gifted Students is a magnet school for young children in the Los Angeles area.The school has consistently sought to provide a high quality education for students in grades K-5, building a foundation for their future education.Volunteers participated in gardening and painting projects as a follow up to a UCLA Volunteer Day project.

Saturday, October 24, 2015 – Mulholland Middle School

John R. Wooden High School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Mulholland Middle School)

Mulholland Middle School serves students grades 6-8 and is named after William Mulholland, former head of a predecessor department to the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. The school is home to The Mulholland’s Junior Police Academy, the nation’s first middle school program, providing a rigorous academic program centered on law enforcement and law enforcement related careers. The Police Academy Magnet Program encourages all students to be successful through their secondary and post-secondary careers, through a rigorous academic program with an emphasis on discipline and study skills.

On this One Bus, One Cause project, UCLA volunteers completed painting projects that were started on UCLA Volunteer Day, including wainscoting, painting the basketball courts, and completing murals around the school grounds.

Sunday, October 11, 2015 – AIDS Walk Los Angeles

The UCLA Volunteer Center partnered with UCLA Residential Life to participate in AIDS Walk Los Angeles, a walkathon fundraiser that raises money to combat the AIDS epidemic. The funds raised from AIDS Walk Los Angeles benefited more than 20 service organizations, including AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA), an AIDS service organization dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by HIV disease, reducing the incidence of HIV infection, and advocating for fair and effective HIV–related public policy. AIDS Walk Los Angeles makes it possible for APLA to provide urgently needed food, dental care, safe housing, and much more to people with HIV/AIDS who also face poverty, hunger, and homelessness. APLA also runs the county’s largest network of HIV prevention programs to end the epidemic in Los Angeles.

Saturday, August 29, 2015 – 62nd Assembly District’s Back to School Health and Wellness Fair

John R. Wooden High School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Back to School Health and Wellness Fair)

On Saturday, August 29, the Volunteer Center took a bus filled with volunteers to Oakwood Park in Venice to assist with the 62nd Assembly District’s Back to School Health and Wellness Fair. The 62nd District is centered around Los Angeles International Airport and encompasses economically and ethnically diverse cities including Inglewood, Gardena, Hawthorne, El Segundo, Playa del Rey, Venice, Westchester and Marina Del Rey. Sponsored by Assemblywoman Autumn Burke and Los Angeles City Councilman Mike Bonin, the inaugural fair included free health screenings and school supplies, food, games, entertainment, as well as valuable community resource information. Volunteers assisted with check-in, distributing school supplies, staffing game areas, and bringing Bruin spirit!

Friday, May 8, 2015 – John R. Wooden High School

John R. Wooden High School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (JRWHS)

The mission of John R. Wooden High School is to provide students with an alternative learning environment that enables them to develop the skills necessary to become responsible members of society. Their vision, in partnership with the community, is to provide a dynamic learning approach that promotes self-esteem, mutual respect, and global awareness in preparing each individual to be a lifelong learner. JRWHS is named after UCLA’s Coach Wooden, and it is a California Model Continuation High School.

The UCLA Volunteer Center and the First Year Experience office partnered for the third year to bring the UCLA Common Book to JRWHS. Together with the brilliant students of The Writer’s Den, Facing Project, and UCLA Recreation, a busload of volunteers traveled to JRWHS to work on a variety of creative writing projects, bring a Common Book for each student at the school, and engage in team-building activities.

Sunday, May 3, 2015 – Paseo del Rey Elementary School

Paseo del Rey Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Paseo Del Rey)

Paseo del Rey Natural Science Magnet first opened its doors in 1962 and started as a small, neighborhood school. Over the past 50 years, it has grown into a Natural Science Magnet with a diverse student population from the greater Los Angeles area. Teachers, parents, students and alumni, as well as the local residents and business community, have enthusiastically supported Paseo. This support has provided the students at Paseo with opportunities for greater academic excellence and cultural diversity, without losing the personal caring, nurturing, safety, and intimacy of a neighborhood school.

On May 3, volunteers assisted with school’s annual Paseo Island Festival. The event was Paseo del Rey’s biggest event and fundraiser of the year – a fair with an Island theme. The festival included food, games, entertainment (music and dancers), and a silent auction. Volunteers assisted with collecting tickets and staffing the game booths, jump houses, and food booths.

Saturday, April 25, 2015 – Bellflower Bike Trail

Bellflower Bike Trail UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Bellflower Bike Trail)

The Bellflower Pedestrian and Bicycle Trail is a 2.3 mile blacktop multipurpose rail trail, which was dedicated in November 2009. It follows the Right of Way of the old Pacific Electric Railway (the Red Cars) across Bellflower. The trail begins at the Ruth R. Caruthers Park and Bellflower Skate Park on the banks of the San Gabriel River. It ends on Lakewood Boulevard at Paseo Street at the border of the City of Paramount. The trail has two five foot striped bike lanes and a four foot pedestrian lane. The trail is well signed and well lighted with attractive street lights the length of the trail. The Bellflower Bike Trail is well utilized by the community.

Volunteers from the UCLA Volunteer Center and California State Assemblymember Cristina Garcia’s office performed a Bellflower Bike Trail Beautification Project on April 25th. Volunteers painted the light poles, performed litter abatement, pulled weeds, and raked the planters on the south side of the trail. In addition to Assemblymember Garcia, volunteers were also joined by Bellflower Mayor Scott Larsen and Bellflower City Council Member Sonny Santa Ines.

Saturday, February 25, 2015 – Nora Sterry Elementary School

Operation Gratitude UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Nora Sterry Elementary School)

Nora Sterry Elementary School has been fostering the minds of their students in the Los Angeles area for over one hundred years. The school currently enrolls students in grades K-5 and excel in promoting their core values of knowledge, courage, and achievement.

There is a long and proud history between Nora Sterry Elementary School and UCLA, as Bruins have done a variety of service projects at this school throughout the years. In addition, Nora Sterry is one of the schools where UCLA graduate students and alumni begin their teaching careers as well as where the children of UCLA staff and faculty begin their education.

On February 21, volunteers continued this long legacy of service at Nora Sterry through a fun painting project to create math-themed murals on the playground.

Saturday, January 31, 2015 – Saturn Elementary School

Operation Gratitude UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Saturn Elementary School)

Saturn Elementary School is a public school in the Los Angeles Unified School District that serves 510 students in grades K-5. This elementary school is located in the Mid-Wilshire area of Los Angeles.

On January 31, volunteers painted a large mural at the entrance of the school to welcome schoolchildren into their world of learning.

Saturday, January 24, 2015 – Burroughs Middle School

Operation Gratitude UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Burroughs Middle School)

John Burroughs Middle School is a public middle school in Hancock Park. The school serves the Hancock Park, Koreatown, Mid-Wilshire and Windsor Square sections of Los Angeles, California. Additionally, it serves portions of Park La Brea, Brookside, and a small portion of the city of West Hollywood is zoned to Burroughs. The school serves about 2,300 students in grades 6-8 and is part of the Los Angeles Unified School District.

On January 24, volunteers painted college logos on all basketball backboards and repainted playground lines for schoolchildren to use during recess, lunch, and after school.

Monday, January 19, 2015 – Queen Anne Elementary School

Operation Gratitude UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Queen Anne Elementary School)

Queen Anne Elementary School is located in Mid-City, Los Angeles. This school is a safe, healthy, interactive learning environment that stimulates and nurtures productive independent thinkers. High expectations set by the school’s staff and teachers challenge students to achieve their fullest potential and to respect both themselves and others in the school environment and local community. The goal of parents and educators at Queen Anne Elementary is to work cooperatively in effective partnerships in order to increase the achievement for all students as well as cultivate independent, creative thinkers within a culturally diverse environment.

On this past Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service, Bruins from UCLA’s Alumni Mentor Program celebrated National Mentoring Month by sending alumni and mentee pairs to the service project along with UCLA Alumni’s Diversity Programs group. Another team from UCLA Transfers joined together in service for Transfer Pride Week. Together, volunteers completed painting murals around the playground to inspire elementary school children in learning and play.

2014

Saturday, November 22, 2014 – Gault Elementary School

Gault Elementary SchoolUCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Gault Elementary School)

On November 22, volunteers finished up some UCLA Volunteer Day projects, such as painting murals at the outdoor eating areas and handball court walls. Gault Elementary is a public elementary serving 466 K-5 students, located in the Van Nuys district of Los Angeles. The school features a Before and After School Program, a Gifted and Talented Program, and bilingual education. UCLA’s presence on the Gault Elementary campus began when the Geffen Playhouse partnered with the School of Theater, Film, and Television to bring the interactive literacy and storytelling programs to the students.

Saturday, November 15, 2014 – Harvard Elementary School

Harvard Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Harvard Elementary School)

On November 15, a group of volunteers finished up some UCLA Volunteer Day projects, including working with an expert muralist to paint murals on the storage bins, touch-up murals on playground floors, and painting a mural on a brick wall of the school. The mission of Harvard Elementary School is to be a nurturing academic community. Every child will be motivated to learn through an encouraging partnership between parents and staff members. Harvard strives to provide a safe environment with a rigorous curriculum and highly qualified teachers. The vision for Harvard Elementary School is for all students to be high achieving, lifelong learners and thinkers, who will become productive, successful, and responsible citizens.

Saturday, November 15, 2014 – Monlux Elementary School

Monlux Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Monlux Elementary School)

On November 15, volunteers finished up some UCLA Volunteer Day projects, including touching-up wainscoting and painting on all school buildings. Monlux Elementary School is a North Hollywood elementary school that fosters a mutually respectful, child-centered environment where positive interaction promotes critical thinking skills for lifelong learning. The academic curriculum at Monlux develops social, cultural and environmental awareness and encourages students to contribute positively to the global community. Educators and staff consider the different learning styles of their students and strive to provide a variety of teaching and learning strategies to meet their needs. Respect, courtesy, and high moral standards are key components of student life at Monlux Elementary as these standards help to promote positive intercultural relations.

Sunday, November 9, 2014 – Veterans Home of West Los Angeles

Veterans Home of West Los Angeles UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Veterans Home of West Los Angeles)

Since the UCLA Volunteer Day projects on September 29, veterans have been asking when Bruins can come back again! On November 9, volunteers met and talked with the Veterans who are housed at the facility, sanded and stained outdoor chairs and patio furniture, and got the area prepared to celebrate the Veterans Day on November 11. The Veterans Home of West Los Angeles is an establishment known for its history with our nation’s veterans and the level of care provided by its staff in assisted living and skilled nursing. Our veteran troops receive the support of the military and community for protecting our rights in their time of service in a dignified and respectful home environment.

Sunday, November 2, 2014 – Esperanza Elementary School

Esperanza Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Esperanza Elementary School)

On November 2, a small group of dedicated volunteers finished up some UCLA Volunteer Day projects at Esperanza Elementary, including touching up paint on the school walls, touching up wainscoting around the school, and touching up the USA mural map painted on the playground. Esperanza Elementary is a K-5 public elementary school in the Westlake region of Los Angeles. This school was rated by the Los Angeles Times as a “most effective value-added school” based on California Standards Testing improvement.

Saturday, October 25, 2014 – Los Angeles Regional Food Bank

Los Angeles Regional Food Bank UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Los Angeles Regional Food Bank)

On October 25, volunteers from UCLA and USC visited the downtown food bank to sort, inspect, and clean food for distribution, as well as assemble food packages that go to children, senior citizens, and women with infants across Los Angeles County. The mission of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank is to mobilize resources to fight hunger in our community. In the weeks leading up to the annual USC vs. UCLA football face-off, fans, faculty, alumni, staff, and students will engage in a face-off to “Tackle Hunger” through a variety of activities, including this day of service at the Food Bank.

Sunday, October 12, 2014 – AIDS Walk Los Angeles

AIDS Walk LA UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (AIDS Walk Los Angeles)

The UCLA Volunteer Center, Residential Life: Leadership & Involvement, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, and the LGBT Resource Center joined forces to participate in AIDS Walk Los Angeles, a walkathon fundraiser that raises money to combat the AIDS epidemic. The funds raised from AIDS Walk Los Angeles benefit AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA), an AIDS service organization dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by HIV disease, reducing the incidence of HIV infection, and advocating for fair and effective HIV–related public policy. AIDS Walk Los Angeles makes it possible for APLA to provide urgently needed food, dental care, safe housing, and much more to people with HIV/AIDS who also face poverty, hunger, and homelessness. APLA also runs the county’s largest network of HIV prevention programs to end the epidemic in Los Angeles.

Saturday, August 23, 2014 – Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Operation Gratitude)

Operation Gratitude is a volunteer-based nonprofit organization that sends care packages to individually named troops deployed overseas, to their children left behind, and to Wounded Warriors, New Recruits, First Responders, and Veterans. To date, the organization has sent over one million care packages, a goal attained in December 2013! On Saturday, August 23rd, the UCLA Volunteer Center sent a busload of volunteers to the National Guard Armory in Van Nuys to prepare and assemble care packages for our overseas service members. Responsibilities included assembling the packages, sorting donated items, letter reading and writings, and restocking the assembly lines. Operation Gratitude had approximately 600 volunteers for this assemblyday.

Saturday, May 24, 2014 – Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Operation Gratitude)

In honor of Memorial Day, the UCLA Volunteer Center and UCLA Alumni from the San Fernando Valley Bruin Network came together for the second year to share some Bruin spirit and assemble care packages at Operation Gratitude. The Van Nuys-based nonprofit organization annually sends 100,000 care packages to individually named U.S. Service Members deployed in hostile regions, to their children left behind, and to Wounded Warriors, Veterans and First Responders. The mission is to lift morale, bring a smile to a service member’s face, and express to our Armed Forces the appreciation and support of the American people. Learn more about the Volunteer Center’s on-going commitment to Operation Gratitude at /operation-gratitude/. This service project included production of the care packages, labeling, letter reading and writing, running packages, re-stocking the lines, breaking down cartons, and many other tasks. Breakfast and snacks were included. Volunteers were welcome to purchase their own lunch from one of the many food trucks that were on-site, and the food trucks gave a percentage back to Operation Gratitude. This project was a collaboration between the Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club. The Volunteer Leadership Program gives students the opportunity to work directly with the Center by planning and leading their own community service projects in Los Angeles. Learn more this collaboration at /vlp/.

Sunday, May 4, 2014 – Burroughs Middle School

Burroughs Middle School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Burroughs Middle School)

John Burroughs Middle School is a public middle school in Hancock Park and serves the Hancock Park, Koreatown, Mid-Wilshire and Windsor Square section of Los Angeles as well as portions of Park La Brea, Brookside, and West Hollywood. The school serves about 2,300 students in grades 6-8 and is part of the Los Angeles Unified School District. On Sunday, May 4th, the Volunteer Leadership Program sent a busload of Bruin volunteers to John Burroughs Middle School to beautify empty school buildings with new murals. Participants had the opportunity to assist in the painting of the murals and interact with students and community members. This project was a collaboration between the Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club. The Volunteer Leadership Program gives students the opportunity to work directly with the Center by planning and leading their own community service projects in Los Angeles. Learn more this collaboration at /alumni-scholars/.

Saturday, May 3, 2014 – Belmont Village Senior Living

Belmont Village Senior Living UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Belmont Village Senior Living)

Westwood Belmont Village Senior Living is situated in a residential neighborhood in the heart of Westwood along Wilshire Boulevard’s “Golden Mile.” Residents are supported by very responsive and knowledgeable staff trained in independent living, assisted living, Alzheimer’s care, and resident care services. This unique senior living environment is an individually tailored, research-based program for Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia. Programming focuses on “mental workouts,” encompassing the six areas of cognition, and enabling residents to exercise their minds and memories every day. Belmont Village is a place where their residents can live life to the fullest. On May 3, we brought over a group of enthusiastic UCLA volunteers to share smiles with Belmont Village Senior Living. Volunteers had the opportunity to make a positive impact on the seniors’ lives through interactive activities such as as cookie decorating, gardening, crafting, and more.

Saturday, May 3, 2014 – Watts Towers

Watts Towers UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Watts Towers)

The Watts Towers are a historic site on a national, state, and local level. The towers are 17 individual sculptures constructed by an Italian immigrant (Simon Rodia) in the early 20th century. Since their conception, the towers have provided a focal point to south central Los Angeles. The community partner maintains the grounds of this historic site to ensure that visitors can understand more of the history of Los Angeles at a beautiful and artistic landmark. During the project, volunteers were immersed in a hands-on beautification project on the historic Watts Tower and rewarded with a personal tour providing the history and significance of the site. Volunteers will lay down soil, allowing the Watts Towers team to plant trees, flowers, and shrubs to improve the appeal of the site. Additionally, this volunteer service will lay the ground for Watts Towers’ staff and future volunteer groups to improve the aesthetic of the site. This project is a collaboration between the Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club. The Volunteer Leadership Program gives students the opportunity to work directly with the Center by planning and leading their own community service projects in Los Angeles. Learn more this collaboration at /alumni-scholars/.

Saturday, April 26, 2014 – Magnolia Elementary School

Magnolia Elementary School UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Magnolia Elementary School)

Magnolia Elementary School is a public school containing grades K-6, located in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. 98% of students are Hispanic or Latino, and 100% participate in the Free or Reduced Lunch Program. 80% of students are English Learners. Despite the challenges Magnolia faces, their learning community is committed to providing a rigorous, standards-based, and well-rounded curriculum for students. They also provide extracurricular activities, including vocal music and chorus programs, an orchestra, and a mariachi program. On April 26, a bus of excited volunteers hosted by the Volunteer Leadership Program finished the work started at Magnolia Elementary School during UCLA Volunteer Day (learn more). Participants painted fences around the school, as well as painted a brightly filled-in stenciled map of the United States for the playground. This project was a collaboration between the Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club. The Volunteer Leadership Program gives students the opportunity to work directly with the Center by planning and leading their own community service projects in Los Angeles. Learn more this collaboration at /alumni-scholars/.

Friday, April 25, 2014 – John R. Wooden High School

John R. Wooden High School
The mission of John R. Wooden High School is to provide students with an alternative learning environment that enables them to develop the skills necessary to become responsible members of society. Their vision, in partnership with the community, is to provide a dynamic learning approach that promotes self-esteem, mutual respect, and global awareness in preparing each individual to be a lifelong learner. JRWHS is named after UCLA’s Coach Wooden, and it is a California Model Continuation High School. The UCLA Volunteer Center and the First Year Experience office partnered for the second year to bring the UCLA Common Book to JRWHS. Together with the brilliant students of The Writer’s Den, we sent a busload of love to JRWHS to work on a variety of creative writing projects and bring a Common Book for each student at the school.

Saturday, April 12, 2014 – UCLA Lab School

UCLA Lab SchoolUCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (UCLA Lab School)
UCLA Lab School, located in the heart of the UCLA campus, is an innovative school for children and a laboratory for teachers and researchers. The practices developed and refined here have an impact on K-12 education around the world. This elementary school is an integral part of UCLA, and what unites both campuses is the once majestic Stone Creek Canyon, which has now dissipated so only a small fragment is left. Volunteers helped restore the only remaining section of unburied creek on the UCLA campus in order to remind students of the shared past of both schools. Through the expert advice of the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Foundation (SMBRF), the local biodiversity and the integrity of the natural landscape has been maintained. SMBRF, which was established by state of California and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, is responsible for cleaning up waterways and creating green spaces and natural habitats in the Los Angeles region. Through these combined efforts, this projects aim was to impact the Lab School students’ lives by changing their understanding of the environment around them, bringing them closer to nature and having a different kind of beauty touch their lives. Our vision is a safe, aesthetic environment for students to learn and a cornerstone for the future UCLA Lab School and UCLA.
On Saturday, April 12, the Volunteer Leadership Program sent a dedicated bunch of volunteers to revitalize the creek that runs through UCLA and the UCLA Lab School. Participants will had the opportunity to enjoy a day outdoors preserving nature and continuing the efforts of the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Foundation, which has been maintaining the creek over the past several years. Many have seen the Creek’s potential impact on the students’ lives and its significance in UCLA history. This project was completed in collaboration with Lab School representatives. This project was a collaboration between the Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club. The Volunteer Leadership Program gives students the opportunity to work directly with the Center by planning and leading their own community service projects in Los Angeles. Learn more this collaboration at volunteer.ucla.edu/alumni-scholars.

Saturday, March 22, 2014 – Griffin Elementary School

Griffin Elementary School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Griffin Elementary School)

Griffin Elementary is located in the Lincoln Heights neighborhood in Los Angeles. The school was built in the 1880′s and is the central point of the neighborhood. Griffin’s community dedicates itself to teaching their students three important values: to be respectful, responsible, and ready. The staff along with their principal works diligently to provide the students resources that will enhance their educational trajectory. Their Principal, Ricardo Romero says, “I believe that all children deserve an opportunity to be challenged and exposed to a rigorous curriculum. It is my expectation that students come to school eager to learn and teachers come ready to teach them.” We love what this school community is doing, and we are excited that we get to partner with them. Keep it up, Griffin Elementary! On Saturday, March 22nd, the Volunteer Leadership Program sent 50 spirited UCLA students to prime and paint the bottom and front portions of the campus bungalows. They went from off-white to bright blue, and it has help brighten up the lively playground. This project was started at Volunteer Day 2013 with volunteers painting the doors and stairwells the same shade of blue, and this VLP project will help in the next stage of painting. The project is expected to be completed on Volunteer Day 2014, when the final group of volunteers paint the backsides of the bungalows. This project was a collaboration between the Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club. The Volunteer Leadership Program gives students the opportunity to work directly with the Center by planning and leading their own community service projects in Los Angeles. Learn more this collaboration at /alumni-scholars/.

Sunday, February 23, 2014 – Mountains Restoration Trust

Mountains Restoration Trust
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Mountains Restoration Trust)

On Sunday, February 23rd, the Volunteer Leadership Program, a collaborative effort between the UCLA Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club, sent a busload of students, alumni, and staff to the Topanga Lookout in Calabasas for a restoration event. Mountains Restoration Trust (MRT) representatives led students in lessons on ecology: describing plants native to the area, noting harmful invasive plant species, and detailing the impact of litter runoff on the fragile watershed ecosystem. MRT is a non-profit land trust that to preserves natural land in the Santa Monica Mountains through restoration, education and land acquisition. This project was a collaboration between the Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club. The Volunteer Leadership Program gives students the opportunity to work directly with the Center by planning and leading their own community service projects in Los Angeles. Learn more this collaboration at /alumni-scholars/.

Saturday, February 22, 2014 – Mark Twain Middle School

Mark Twain Middle School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Mark Twain Middle School)

Mark Twain Middle School in Venice/Mar Vista offers their students the opportunity to build an edible garden, orchard, and healthy food culture while at school. Mark Twain is a Title 1 school, where 84% of the students qualify for free or reduced cost lunch. The school provides healthy food experiences and promotes healthy minds and community through the enjoyment of food and nature. A garden-based curriculum is integrated into many different classes addressing environmental issues and the responsibility of caring for nature. On Saturday, February 22nd, the Volunteer Leadership Program sent a busload of students, families and friends to Mark Twain Middle School for a gardening event. Participants had the opportunity to work on the school’s garden by planting new foliage or by removing old plants, or working on painting projects at the school. This project was a collaboration between the Volunteer Center and the Alumni Scholars Club. The Volunteer Leadership Program gives students the opportunity to work directly with the Center by planning and leading their own community service projects in Los Angeles. Learn more this collaboration at /alumni-scholars/.

Saturday, February 1, 2014 – Lafayette Elementary School

Lafayette Elementary School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Lafayette Elementary School)

The City of Long Beach won a grant to plant 6,000 trees in the city by 2020, and the lead staff on this project were UCLA Alumni! Trees reduce greenhouse gases, provide habitat, reduce cooling costs, and increase property values. On the first day of February, volunteers from UCLA, Wrigley Association, Long Beach Rescue Mission, Girl Scouts, Long Beach Polytechnic High School, TreePeople, Port of Long Beach, Neighborhood Services Bureau, and more came together to plant 96 trees around Lafayette Elementary School and the surrounding Wrigley Historic District. Experts were there to guide Bruins in planting and watering healthy trees for the neighborhood.

Monday, January 20, 2014 – Horace Mann Middle School

Horace Mann Middle School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Horace Mann Middle School)

One Bus, One Cause kicks off every calendar year with a service project collaboration with City Year Los Angeles. Our 1st One Bus, One Cause took us to Los Angeles Academy Middle School, our 24th project took us to Belmont High School, and now our 44th project brought us back to Horace Mann Middle School – a Volunteer Day 2013 community partner. The UCLA Volunteer Center was proud to partner again for the third year with City Year Los Angeles for a powerful day of service that honored the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. City Year leads tutors and mentors to work in under-resourced neighborhoods to become powerful role models to youth and to help create solutions for community problems. Many of the City Year Los Angeles cohort consisted of friends and alumni from UCLA, including 2012-2013 Volunteer Center Fellow Anees Hasnain and UCLA Volunteer Day 2012 & 2013 Project Leader Erica Eddings, who led this special 1,200-volunteer project at Mann Middle School. Volunteers spent the day beautifying Horace Mann Middle School, an urban middle school serving grades 6-8 in South Los Angeles. Mann Middle School, through a collaborative team effort, is committed to developing the whole child as a successful life-long learner by creating a positive school culture through the effective delivery of a rigorous standards-driven curriculum based on assessed student needs. Volunteers made a high-needs school a more engaging learning environment for students. Service projects included painting educational murals, inspirational quotes, and college logos around the campus alongside 1,200 other volunteers from various companies, universities, and community organizations.

2013

Sunday, December 8, 2013 – Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Operation Gratitude)

For some soldiers, a letter is the only contact they have with home. The UCLA Volunteer Center has a goal of sending 3,000 hand-written letters and care packages to military service members and veterans each year, in partnership with Operation Gratitude, a non-profit group based in Van Nuys, CA. All five branches of the military are sent letters: Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard. Operation Gratitude celebrated their March to a Million, and needed some blue and gold assistance with the huge event. This was giant milestone for the non-profit; Operation Gratitude is the first military support organization to accomplish such a feat! This project required a lot of physical activity to navigate the base, breakdown carnival games and activities, sweep/rake/clean, and more.

Saturday, November 16, 2013 – Walgrove Elementary School

Walgrove Elementary School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Walgrove Elementary School)

Walgrove Avenue Elementary School is committed to providing students with a positive, nurturing, yet rigorous, standards-based educational environment where students can experience success through academic growth and achievement to their maximum potential. This K-5 school is a Title I Achieving School with a strong parent community. This One Bus, One Cause project was a partnership with Enrich LA, a local non-profit that creates community gardens at schools in order to increase green outdoor spaces, create lush and inviting gardens, and improve the health and wellness of children and their surrounding community. On November 16, volunteers shoveled, moved, and laid soil, compost, and mulch, and weeded around existing fruit trees, all vital steps in preparing the Walgrove Wildlands, a native ecosystem on land formerly covered with an asphalted hardscape.

Sunday, October 20, 2013 – Castlebay Lane Elementary School

Castlebay Lane Elementary School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Castlebay Lane Elementary School)

Castlebay Lane Elementary School is a high performing, LAUSD elementary school located in Porter Ranch. Under the caring and innovative watch of a dedicated principal, committed faculty, and an energized parent and teacher organization, this school educates approximately 750 pre-kindergarten through fifth grade students and boasts some of the highest test scores in LAUSD and the state. On UCLA Volunteer Day and through a follow-up One Bus, One Cause, volunteers completed a number of projects to enhance the school. Volunteers painted 4 handball court murals, 6 basketball court backboards, and created a large USA mural map on the playground.

Sunday, October 13, 2013 – AIDS Walk Los Angeles: A Walk For Pedro

AIDS Walk Los Angeles: A Walk For Pedro
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (AIDS Walk Los Angeles: A Walk For Pedro)

AIDS Walk is a walkathon fundraiser that raises money to combat the AIDS epidemic. The funds raised from AIDS Walk Los Angeles will benefit AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA), an AIDS service organization dedicated to improving the lives of people affected by HIV disease, reducing the incidence of HIV infection, and advocating for fair and effective HIV–related public policy. AIDS Walk Los Angeles makes it possible for APLA to provide urgently needed food, dental care, safe housing, and much more to people with HIV/AIDS who also face poverty, hunger, and homelessness. APLA also runs the county’s largest network of HIV prevention programs to end the epidemic in Los Angeles. This year, the UCLA Volunteer Center, Office for Residential Life, First Year Experience, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, and the LGBT Resource Center joined forces to form to participate in the walk. We walked for Pedro, the main character in this year’s Common Book, Pedro and Me: Friendship, Loss, and What I Learned.

Saturday, July 13, 2013 – Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area (Christmas in July)

Christmas in July
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Christmas in July)

One Bus, One Cause returned to work at Christmas in July again in order to serve local families and children at an event that celebrates literacy, health, and wellness in the 54th Assembly District, represented by the service-minded Assemblymember Holly Mitchell. This volunteer effort took place at the Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area and is a collaboration with the Bruin Resource Center and their Bruin Guardian Scholars Summer Academy. Check out last year’s project details and pictures. Volunteers participated with children in various free fun zones including the Fun & Fit Zone, Health Zone, Environment Zone, Food Zone, Reading Zone, and more.

Saturday, May 25, 2013 – Operation Gratitude

Operation Gratitude
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Operation Gratitude)

In honor of Memorial Day, the UCLA Volunteer Center and UCLA Alumni from the San Fernando Valley Bruin Network came together to share some Bruin spirit and assembled care packages at Operation Gratitude. The Van Nuys-based nonprofit organization annually sends 100,000 care packages to individually named U.S. Service Members deployed in hostile regions, to their children left behind, and to Wounded Warriors, Veterans and First Responders. The mission is to lift morale, bring a smile to a service member’s face, and express to our Armed Forces the appreciation and support of the American people. Learn more about the Volunteer Center’s on-going commitment to Operation Gratitude at /operation-gratitude/. This service project included production of the care packages, labeling, letter reading and writing, running packages, re-stocking the lines, breaking down cartons, and many other tasks.

Saturday, May 4, 2013 – Union Rescue Mission

Union Rescue Mission
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Union Rescue Mission)

One Bus, One Cause: One Mission, One Solution // Serve the homeless: Dish out ice cream and play games with kids at Union Rescue Mission!
Union Rescue Mission started as a moving gospel wagon in 1891 and has now expanded to become one of the largest missions of its kind dedicated to housing the homeless of Los Angeles and providing long-term services to help individuals achieve self-sufficiency and break the cycle of poverty. This nonprofit organization offers food, housing, emergency medical services, and a long term transitional living program to help the homeless improve their lives. Beyond the service they provide, Union Rescue Mission teaches about hope and faith to give those they help the resources needed to start a new life. The Volunteer Leadership Program in partnership with the UCLA Volunteer Center sent a bus of wonderful volunteers to Union Rescue Mission to spread a little happiness with an ice cream party! Union Rescue Mission’s tradition of distributing ice cream has become a legendary event to the community and always draws a crowd. This event provided the opportunity for volunteers to talk and socialize with the homeless. Union Rescue Mission also houses a large number of children in their facility, and they have a beautiful open area on the roof where volunteers played games, and demonstrated True Bruin to these children.

Friday, May 3, 2013 – John R. Wooden High School

John R. Wooden High School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (John R. Wooden High School)

Make Each Day Your Masterpiece
The mission of John R. Wooden High School is to provide students with an alternative learning environment that enables them to develop the skills necessary to become responsible members of society. Their vision, in partnership with the community, is to provide a dynamic learning approach that promotes self-esteem, mutual respect, and global awareness in preparing each individual to be a lifelong learner. JRWHS is named after UCLA’s Coach Wooden, and it is a California Model Continuation High School. The UCLA Volunteer Center partnered with the Office of Residential Life, First Year Experience, and Team Green on the Hill to send a busload of love to John Wooden’s namesake high school. UCLA and JRWHS students joined together to share a Common Book experience about The Other Wes Moore with books donated from the Recycle Your Common Book Drive hosted on the Hill. UCLA and JRWHS students told the story of who they were (The Other Me), who they are, and who they would like to become (career/life goals). Instead of simply having conversations about these topics, students used art, writing and the spoken word to visually and verbally represent their story. Students can talk about high school and college experiences, career ambitions, life goals, and more. Through these various “art stations”, students engaged in conversations that created a sense of community among both populations by learning from diverse perspectives.

Saturday, April 27, 2013 – UCLA Lab School

UCLA Lab School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (UCLA Lab School)

Rooting for Baby Bruins
The UCLA Lab School , located on the north side of the UCLA campus, allows youth to benefit from innovated and novel teaching styles while providing a place for personal development. Teachers work to incorporate the state curriculum into a classroom inspired by the interested and needs of the students. Thorough this process, the UCLA Lab School tries to establish “a circle of curiosity, experience, and understanding that transforms children’s lives”.   Nearly 100 UCLA undergraduate students were able to participate in this “Two Feet, One Cause,” walking over to volunteer at the UCLA Lab School. Once there, the students were split into two groups to repaint specific outdoor areas of the school and to assist the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Foundation (SMBRF) with the landscaping effort along the creek that flows through the UCLA campus. The only unburied portion of this creek can be seen at the Lab School and over the years it has become dominated by invasive vegetation which has choked out the few remaining native plant species. In an effort to improve the quality of the environment and preserve the creek, volunteers removed this non-native vegetation and planted native vegetation in its place. UCLA students had a chance to explore service with two community partners, along with working to provide a nature-friendly area that they can visit any time.

Sunday, April 21, 2013 – STAR Eco Station

STAR Eco Station
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr STAR Eco Station)

STAR Eco Station is a wildlife rescue facility and environmental science museum whose goals are to educate visitors and students about endangered animals and preservation of the environment, while also rescuing illegally trafficked or abandoned animals. The station has been hosting a Children’s Earth Day celebration annually for the past decade, inviting locals and over 50 different school communities. The celebration helps raise funds for endangered animals while educating children about the environment, the earth, and how to be environmentally-friendly in fun and exciting ways. The event day brings in over 25,000 participants and includes fun, food, performers, and lots of enthusiasm to become eco-friendly. Volunteers helped at STAR’s Children’s Earth Day Festival, running special booths for the children. This event was a huge success in the community with over 20,000 attendees, and this is the second year that UCLA has participated.

Saturday, April 20, 2013 – Emerson Middle School

Emerson Middle School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Emerson Middle School)

Emerson Middle School is one of few educational sites within UCLA’s  vicinity. Emerson holds a special place in the hearts of UCLA’s students, staff, and faculty as many of their relatives attend or are involved with the Middle school. The goal of this project was to deepen the unity between these two institutions and support the school’s mission of training tomorrow’s leaders. Volunteers renovated and painted three main areas of the school: primed and painted handrails of six stairs, painted about thirty benches, and painted columns on the way to classrooms.

Saturday, April 6, 2013 – Salvation Army Bell Shelter

My Friend’s Place
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Salvation Army Bell Shelter)

Bell Shelter provides lodging and assistance for up to 350 homeless men and women at any given time in a 76,000 square foot former warehouse facility, and in 15 mobile homes located adjacent to the main shelter building. Bell Shelter’s services are provided through four primary program components: Emergency Shelter and Services, which provides immediate necessities such as food, shelter, clothing, and case management; Skills Acquisition/Transitional Housing which offers a wide range of on-site supportive services such as vocational training, educational services, employment assistance, job placement, substance abuse recovery, and case management; Transitional Housing with Semi-Independent Living which offers affordable housing and ongoing support to enhance independent living skills while saving money for affordable, permanent housing; as well as a state-licensed residential drug and alcohol treatment program operating in the on-site Wellness Center. On Saturday, April 6, Swipes for the Homeless and the Volunteer Center teamed up to send a busload of love to the Bell Shelter for a hands-on opportunity for students. Participants had the opportunity to help out in the Food Service Department by preparing meals and doing inventory of the donated food, or through beautification of the facility and garden.

Thursday, April 4, 2013 – Nora Sterry Elementary School (Alumni Scholars)

Nora Sterry Elementary School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Nora Sterry Elementary School)

Fun with Fitness: Come Get Movin’ With a Bruin
Nora Sterry Elementary School has been fostering the minds of their students in the Los Angeles area for 115 years. They currently enroll students in grades K-5 and excel in promoting their core values of knowledge, courage, and achievement. In fact, the hard work of their dedicated teachers and staff has made them into a Title I Achievement school for the past six years. There is a long and proud history between Nora Sterry Elementary School and UCLA, as Bruins have done a variety of service projects throughout the years at Nora Sterry. Likewise, Nora Sterry has become one of the schools where UCLA alumni begin their teaching careers, and where the children of UCLA staff and professors begin their education. We continued this long legacy of service at Nora Sterry through this project: Fun with Fitness: Come Get Movin’ With a Bruin. On Thursday, April 4, the Volunteer Leadership Program sent a bus-load of energetic volunteers to Nora Sterry Elementary where they taught students and their families the importance of fitness and nutrition at the school’s Family Fitness Night. Participants guided students through fun games and activities, such as relay races and nutrition workshops. Participants also aided in the set-up and clean-up for the event.

Saturday, February 23, 2013 – My Friend’s Place (Alumni Scholars)

My Friend’s Place
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (My Friend’s Place)

My Friend’s Place, a privately funded organization, is a continuum of care that provides aid to homeless youth and their children in the Los Angeles community. The mission of this organization is “to assist and inspire homeless youth to build self-sufficient lives.” On February 23, 2013 volunteers helped clean, beautify, and organize My Friend’s Place, which serves over a thousand individuals around the region. By contributing to MFP, volunteers created a positive and inspirational environment that may change the lives of the homeless youth who turn to MFP for help. During the event, volunteers participated in deep cleaning of the dayroom area, disinfected the children’s play space, provided gardening services, organized donations, and painted.

Saturday, February 23, 2013 – Mark Twain Middle School Gardens (Alumni Scholars)

Mark Twain Middle School Gardens
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Mark Twain Middle School Gardens)

Mark Twain Middle School is dedicated to promoting the green initiatives and sustainability through the creation and maintenance of its on-site garden. The school’s faculty and students have become “master gardeners” in the community with the development of the garden curriculum project. On various weekends, Mark Twain Middle School enlists the help of faculty, students, and outside volunteers for its garden workdays, where community members work to improve the garden’s plant beds and amphitheater, along with mulching, weeding, and other activities. Created to be used as an educational tool, the garden at Mark Twain is almost 50 years old and has been well incorporated into the schools curriculum. For this reason, the garden workdays are important to the students’ success especially as many students are underrepresented from all over Los Angeles with many of them having to drive hours just to attend school. On February 23, 2013 volunteers had the opportunity to give back to the community while creating a sustainable environment. Volunteers assisted with painting a mural, working on maintenance in the various gardens, and helping to start the beginning stages of an outside amphitheater.

Friday, February 22, 2013 – Los Angeles Regional Food Bank

Los Angeles Regional Food Bank
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Los Angeles Regional Food Bank)
The mission of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank is to mobilize resources to fight hunger in our community. UCLA External Affairs has adopted the Food Bank since February 2012 to show the staff commitment to service in the Los Angeles community. Each month, a different department visits the downtown food bank to sort, inspect, and clean food for distribution, as well as assemble food packages that go to children, senior citizens, and women with infants across Los Angeles County. On February 22, Carol Block, UCLA Associate of the Chancellor, UCLA Staff Assembly, and the UCLA Volunteer Center led staff and students to the Food Bank for a day of service. Mrs. Block has made it a priority to foster a sense of community at UCLA, bringing staff and students together to showcase talent and appreciation for our diverse community.

Sunday, February 10, 2013 – University High School (Alumni Scholars)

University High School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (University High School)
The Volunteer Leadership Program, in partnership with the UCLA Volunteer Center, sent a well-equipped crew of volunteers to University High School. Participants had the opportunity to work side-by-side with Uni’s students, expanding the hands-on curriculum the students are already familiar with and helping to beautify their outdoor classroom, Food Forest, and campus overall. Volunteers dug trenches to create new gardening spaces, mulch and sustain the Food Forest, created pathways and removed ivy on the hillside, planted various herbs, and talked about their college experiences while working with fellow volunteers and members of the community.

Saturday, February 9, 2013 – Vintage Westwood Horizons

Tree planting at Morningside High School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Vintage Westwood Horizons)
A very special “Two Feet, One Cause” brought warmth to Westwood and extended a helping hand! This Valentine’s Day edition commemorated the sweetheart season with the senior citizens at Vintage Westwood Horizons. The independent senior living center boasts more than 200 residents on 14 floors and caters to an energetic and lively bunch, who live just around the corner from UCLA. Volunteers designed and personally distributed Valentine’s Day cards to the residents, interacted with them over tea and board games, conducted themed arts and crafts workshops, taught simple dance moves, and shared Valentine’s Day experiences.

Saturday, January 26, 2013 – Morningside High School

Tree planting at Morningside High School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Morningside High School)
The Social Justice Learning Institute hosted the 2013 Fruit Tree Distribution in Inglewood at Morningside High School to give away more than 2,000 fruit trees alongside community members, the Inglewood Unified School District, and TreePeople. The day of service also offered health education workshops, composting lessons, and recycling plans for attendees. UCLA volunteers organized the distribution and planting of 2,000 trees around Inglewood and helped with the workshops, lessons, and other needs.

Monday, January 21, 2013 – Belmont High School

Mural Painting at Belmont High School
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Belmont High School)
City Year Los Angeles MLK Day 2013 Flickr

As a follow-up to our very first One Bus, One Cause event, the Volunteer Center was proud to partner again with City Year Los Angeles for a powerful day of service as we honored the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. City Year leads tutors and mentors to work in under-resourced neighborhoods to become powerful role models to youth and to help create solutions for community problems. Learn more about the City Year and UCLA collaboration via a recent interview with the Director of the UCLA Career Center: Recruiting Young Leaders: UCLA Led 2012-13 applications to City Year. On the campus holiday, volunteers made a high-needs school a more engaging learning environment for students. Service projects included painting educational murals, inspirational quotes, and college logos around the campus alongside 1,000 other volunteers from City Year LA, the Los Angeles Dodgers, Starbucks, and more.

2012

Monday, November 10, 2012 – Veterans’ Day of Service

Veterans Day of Service
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Veterans Day)

The City of Los Angeles and Volunteer Los Angeles worked with UCLA on the Veterans’ Day of Service. The event was located in our backyard at the Veterans Home of California – West Los Angeles. In addition to several Veterans’ Day celebrations, the major component of the day focused on volunteer projects that benefit veterans and their families. Active Military, Veterans, military family, and civilian volunteers joined forces to help construct above ground planters and plant flowers and trees around the VA facility.

Saturday, October 27, 2012 – Community Service Commission Day of Service

CSC Day of Service
UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (CSC Day of Service 2012)

Each year, the Volunteer Center teams up with the Community Service Commission to provide a Day of Service, held after the annual UCLA Volunteer Day, to expose Bruins to new service opportunities in Los Angeles. The Community Service Commission’s Day of Service is an opportunity for Bruins to serve the Los Angeles community after Volunteer Day. More than 500 students participate each year, and 2012 marked the 10th anniversary of CSC’s big event, which also fell on the national Make A Difference Day. In honor of this anniversary, Bruins served at ten different community partners around Los Angeles to become educated about social justice issues that focused on a range of issues from the environment to hunger and homelessness. Day of Service is intended to expose students to the different issues first-hand and inspire them to a lifetime dedication to community service.

Saturday, August 25, 2012 – Annual School Readiness & Health Fair


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Annual School Readiness & Health Fair)

One Bus, One Cause rolled to the 3rd Annual School Readiness & Health Fair hosted by Senator Roderick D. Wright, Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, and the National Family Life & Education Center at Jesse Owens Park. The fair offered a discussion of current legislation and issues, and families received valuable information about the community, education, and health. Over 1,000 people attended, most of them children aged 5 to 14 in low to moderate income families. School supplies, health services, and backpacks were given out to all families in attendance. Volunteers assisted with running the different hands-on activities and zones for kids, including inflatable obstacle courses, game booths, arts and crafts areas, and school supply distribution.
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Saturday, August 4, 2012 – PADRES Annual Family Picnic & Carnival


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (PADRES Annual Family Picnic & Carnival)

UCLA and the UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital supports the Annual Family Picnic and Carnival hosted by PADRES Contra El Cáncer. This carnival is a full day of fun that includes live entertainment, carnival games and rides, art activities, food, and more for over 5,000 childhood cancer patients and their families. UCLA volunteers were especially invited to assist with running the different hands-on activities and booths for families.
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Saturday, July 14, 2012 – Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area)

On July 14th, UCLA will be working together with Assemblymember Holly Mitchell on her annual Christmas in July event at Kenneth Hahn Park. Each year, Assemblymember Mitchell reaches out to schools in the 47th district to invite them to a day of fun in the sun. Different zones and events were set up for children to enjoy, including a health zone with screenings, reading corner, and environmental area. E-readers were handed out to lucky families nominated by their schools, and this event focuses on the needs of low-income parents and children between the ages of 7-15. Last year, Ron Artest volunteered to be the Summer Santa, and planning was underway for a bigger and better Christmas in July this year! Volunteers assisted with running the different zone activities for kids, registration and welcome, and other needed tasks throughout the day. Volunteers wore comfortable shoes, their UCLA volunteer t-shirt which was provided, and appropriate clothing for a day of running around and playing with children. Food was provided at the event for all volunteers and families in attendance.
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Saturday, May 19, 2012 – Jordan High School (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Jordan High School)

Jordan High School is located in the Watts area and is currently undergoing new changes to its campus. The campus is now divided into two schools run by Green Dot Public Schools and the other by Mayor Villaraigosa’s Partnership for Los Angeles Schools. The mission of Jordan High is to provide a rigorous academic environment by keeping classroom size small, while maintaining opportunities for students through extracurricular activities. UCLA volunteers provided service that visually complied with this mission by painting classrooms in an interacting painting project. Volunteers not only served Jordan aesthetically, but also as examples to students about the importance of serving the Los Angeles community. UCLA volunteers had previously been to Jordan High on Volunteer Day, and the Alumni Scholars program brought volunteers back to meet their needs and objectives and to create a strong connection between Jordan, UCLA, and the Los Angeles community.
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Friday, May 18, 2012 – Griffith Park & Los Angeles Zoo (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Griffith Park)

What started out in 1912 with only 15 animals is now the 133-acre Los Angeles Zoo, with over 1,100 different animals and exciting exhibits! On May 3, the UCLA Alumni Scholars and Volunteer Center have partnered together as sponsors of the LA Zoo Volunteer Project to do some gardening and help care for one of the most enjoyable outdoor attractions in Los Angeles. Volunteers helped supplement Griffith Park’s limited budget by providing much needed volunteer services in the old zoo area, which does not get a lot of attention. Griffith Park maintains a strong relationship with UCLA through our work in the last three Volunteer Days and follow-up projects. Volunteers helped keep it the LA Zoo looking new.
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Saturday, May 12, 2012 – Baldwin Hills Elementary School (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Baldwin Hills Elementary School)

Baldwin Hills Elementary School for Advanced Studies and Gifted Students is a magnet school for young children in the Los Angeles area. The school has consistently sought to provide a high quality education for students in grades K-5, building a foundation for their future education. The UCLA Volunteer Center has maintained a strong relationship with the school since last Volunteer Day, during which UCLA students demonstrated the power of teamwork by repainting the school, as well as designing murals for specific buildings. The goal of this project was to repaint specific buildings on the school campus that volunteers on Volunteer Day were unable to complete. The project helped maintain a strong partnership between UCLA and the Baldwin Hills Elementary School beyond Volunteer Day, but the project ultimately benefited the students of the school by improving the aesthetics of their learning environment.
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Sunday, May 6, 2012 – Malibu Creek State Park (Big Sunday Weekend)

 


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Big Sunday Weekend)
On Sunday, May 06, 2012, a bus filled with fifty enthusiastic UCLA volunteers arrived at the Malibu Creek State Park as part of the Big Sunday Weekend annual spring event. The goal was to help the Mountains Restoration Trust restore the natural habitat of the State Park by removing foreign and toxic weeds and watering plants. Volunteers were given a brief introduction of the habitat of the Santa Monica Mountains and learned to distinguish the native grasses from the toxic weeds. After more than 3 hours of hard work, volunteers were satisfied knowing that they helped to save the native trees and animals, and made a positive impact on the ecosystem of the Santa Monica Mountains.
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Saturday, May 5, 2012 – John R. Wooden High School (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (John R. Wooden High School)

Volunteers will be helping the students of John R. Wooden High School as they make pancakes, bacon, and other treats for the community. In addition, volunteers ran several stations aimed at entertaining the community children that attend the event such as face painting. This project aimed for a one-to-one volunteer-student ratio, such that our volunteers were paired with one high school student for the day in hopes that this relationship can continue beyond the scope of this volunteer day. A mentor is just what some of these students need for some extra advice and inspiration! The Annual Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser is a project to raise money for the JRWHS farm. Here the community bonds together over a school farm, where students of the high school feed, clean, and maintain all the animals without any government funding. This farm is aimed at teaching students who attend JRWHS to care for these animals and provide an escape from their daily routines. Volunteers meet students of all backgrounds and walks of life and are exposed to side of Los Angeles they may never be able to see otherwise.
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Saturday, April 28, 2012 – Vista Hermosa Park (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Vista Hermosa Park)

Vista Hermosa Natural Park is a beautiful park in downtown LA, and serves as a major outdoor outlet in the center of a large urban area. It covers 10.5 acres, complete with wooded areas and hiking trails. Most importantly, it acts a giant watershed and plays a major role in providing irrigation and drinking water to all of LA. By helping to keep this park in good condition, volunteers will play an integral role in maintaining not only a beautiful park in the middle of LA, but maintaining the aquifer from which UCLA students get their drinking water. Volunteers helped mulch the park to make sure all the plants stay vibrant and healthy. Volunteers carried bags of mulch, rake it, and enjoy toiling in the sun for an afternoon.
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Tuesday, April 24, 2012 – Brockton Avenue Elementary School (Alumni Scholars)


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Brockton Avenue Elementary School)

Brockton Avenue Elementary School works with the community to provide students the opportunity to develop their potential, and attain skills in a creative environment that enables them to become effective contributing members of a diverse society. Brockton students share opportunities to develop their abilities, individual judgment, and sense of moral and social responsibility. The school focuses on embodying the spirit of understanding, tolerance, and friendship. Brockton is also a TIE-INS UCLA school. UCLA volunteers visited Brockton to teach five condensed classes using the Junior Achievement curriculum on financial responsibility and money management. Volunteers worked in the third, fourth, fifth, and special education classes to teach “Equipping” to instruct students of the next generation regarding financial responsibility and money management, “Impacting” to instill values and principles in students of the next generation which will be fundamentally necessary in their future educational and vocational pursuits, and “Relationship-building” to maintain and further strengthen the relationship between UCLA and this local school.
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Sunday, April 22, 2012 – University High School (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (University High School)

University High School is located on a historic 24-acre site in West Los Angeles, and a portion of the campus is actually a dedicated California State Historical Site. Uni High has a diverse student population, with students born all over the world and speaking over 40 different languages. Uni also has a strong relationship with UCLA as a TIE-INS school for Bruin employees to send their children to school. Volunteers promoted sustainability, nutrition and wellness at Uni High by preparing and planting a fruit tree grove for students in the Health and Environment Small School. With Uni High being a Title I high school, many students are on reduced and free lunch plans. A forgeable food forest now allows them to have access to healthy snacks and learn lessons about nutrition whenever they pass through. UCLA volunteers also were involved in transplanting a monarch butterfly habitat from Emerson Middle School that was threatened by construction. Uni High students are excited about saving this ecosystem, and having it as a part of their curriculum.
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Sunday, April 22, 2012 – Star Eco Station (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Star Eco Station)

The STAR ECO Station’s Children’s Earth Day was on Sunday, April 22 — the largest Earth Day event in Los Angeles, hosting more than 40,000 people. This was a celebration of eco-friendly games & crafts, food, celebrity guests, crafts, entertainment, and much more! This project provided volunteers to help staff and run this huge event. Volunteers were split into groups to complete various tasks including greeting and welcoming attendees, working VIP check-in, running booths, facilitating the arts and crafts sections, and general help where needed. Volunteers were flexible and ready for any task assigned that day! STAR ECO Station provided lunch to our volunteers, and there were plenty of opportunities to check out the Earth Day event and interact with children and other participants.

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Saturday, April 21, 2012 – Sherman Oaks CES (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Sherman Oaks CES)

Sherman Oaks Center for Enriched Studies is a school designed to enhance the educational experience for students in the Los Angeles community. This school has students from the 4th to the 12th grade. They focus on engaging the students with material inside and outside the classroom and encourage parental involvement in the student’s academic path. Due to a shortage of funds, the school was unable to pay for some projects they hoped to do for their campus. That’s where we came in. This Volunteer Leadership Project was to paint the bungalows they have installed and match the paint on the foundations to the doors and stairways. This project allowed Sherman Oaks CES to appropriate the funds available towards their students’ academic success.
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Saturday, April 21, 2012 – Breed Street Elementary School (Alumni Scholars)

 


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Breed Street Elementary School)
Breed Street Elementary was visited by Chancellor Block and Speaker Pérez on Volunteer Day, and volunteers went back to this important site to complete additional requested service work. The goal was to help beautify the campus for the students of Breed Street Elementary. The principal, Patricia Romero, requested help with the library, as that is the area that needed the most attention. Colorful paint and quotes were used to create an uplifting space in the library. Volunteers painted this area to help transform the space into a better reading and learning environment for all.
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Friday, April 20, 2012 – Nora Sterry Elementary School (Alumni Scholars)

 



UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Nora Sterry Elementary School)

Nora Sterry Elementary School operates on principles beyond just providing an excellent education. The faculty makes it their purpose to raise students in an open and fair environment, so each student can grow intellectually and emotionally. Nora Sterry has a long-standing partnership with UCLA – it is one of the TIE-INS schools for UCLA employees to send their children to school. However, Nora Sterry is more than a willing community partner – the school’s close proximity to the university, and its playful and energetic student body, make events entertaining for students, faculty, and volunteers.
“UCLA Play Date at Nora Sterry” featured volunteers assisting the students at a variety of stations, ranging from sports to arts and crafts. There were four stations that each grade rotated through: creativity, endurance, logic, and do-your-best station. Each station had games, crafts, and/or activities that relate to each of these test-skills themed stations. As suggested by Nora Sterry’s principal, Ms. Frieda Smith, the “play date” carried an essence of de-stressing and amusement before end of the year exams, which the students took in the weeks following the event.
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Friday, April 6, 2012 – Proyecto Jardín

 


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Proyecto Jardín)
The UCLA Volunteer Center and the School of Public Health teamed up for National Public Health Week on Friday, April 6. Volunteers served at Proyecto Jardín – a community garden in Boyle Heights that was created in 1999 and part of the Los Angeles Community Garden Council – to weed, compost, clean, plant, and build new plant beds. Proyecto Jardín was established to allow community members to experience an intergenerational and cross-cultural exchange of knowledge, skills, and techniques in sustainable urban agriculture. A medicine garden with curative herbs and state-of-the-art exercise mat for low-cost physical activity and classes enhance the connection between the community and the local White Memorial Medical Center, who originally donated the land for the project.
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Saturday, March 31, 2012 – Mayor’s Good Food Day of Service

 


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Mayor’s Good Food Day)
On March 31, volunteers worked in conjunction with the Emerson Avenue Community Garden and the Westchester Area Chamber of Commerce on “A Day in the Garden” at the Orville Wright Middle School Garden. The mission for the garden is to develop the grounds into a self-governing and sustainable organic community garden and maintain it for the purpose of providing its members and the surrounding urban community a place to grow food. The vision for the garden is a community gathering place that will bring together Orville Wright Middle School students and staff, local community members, and the general public. Working together, volunteers provide education and guidance in the growing of food plants, recycling of waste through composting, and maintaining a green space open to all. Small seed packets with instructions for growing food in containers were given out, so volunteers could take their new gardening skills back home!
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Saturday, March 3, 2012 – Ramona Gardens Satellite Library

 


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Ramona Gardens Satellite Library)
The UCLA Volunteer Center and the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA) hosted a day of service at the Ramona Gardens satellite library in East Los Angeles. Volunteers participated in a variety of activities from painting, sorting books, and reading to local children in order to help prepare the library for its opening in mid-March. HACLA is opening a satellite library located at the Ramona Gardens public housing community after learning that children feared crossing the street to use a city library for fear of rival gang activity.
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Saturday, February 11, 2012 – Angelus Senior Center


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Angelus Senior Center)
On Saturday, February 11, the UCLA Volunteer Center sent a busload of love to the Angelus Senior Center for a special Valentine’s Day One Bus, One Cause event. Participants had the opportunity to write and distribute Valentine’s Day cards to the residents, and instruct them in essential internet skills including email and online shopping. Many residents speak Chinese, Spanish, and Korean, so volunteers from a variety of international backgrounds were sought to meet the needs of the senior community.
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Saturday, January 28, 2012 – Mark Twain Middle School


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Mark Twain Middle School)
For several decades, the garden at Mark Twain Middle School has been a key component of the school’s educational program and community. Students work in the garden during recess, lunch, and designated classes, and are highly enthusiastic about this special space. However, there are some tasks that they do not have the time or ability to tackle. On January 28th, volunteers created a space for a small auditorium, redesigned and replanted garden beds, removed weeds and debris, constructed arbors to line pathways, and sorted seeds, among other tasks.
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Monday, January 16, 2012 – Los Angeles Academy Middle School


UCLA Volunteer Center Flickr (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service)

Los Angeles Academy Middle School is committed to providing a positive learning environment where students are inspired to succeed both academically and socially. LAAMS boasts more than 2,000 students in grades 6-8, but the school facilities needed a bit of love to match the motivated students.
For the 5th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service on Monday, January 16th, the UCLA Volunteer Center teamed up with City Year Los Angeles to paint murals, scrub surfaces, plant trees, and work non-stop alongside the school’s students and teachers to remodel Los Angeles Academy Middle School.
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