RSVP Newsletter
October 9, 2020
From Rosemarie’s desk … 

Most of you may know I became staff at Volunteer Fox Cities on Aug. 3 and that I am really excited to be here. When they told me I was going to get my very own little corner of the newsletter to communicate with the RSVP volunteers, that really put a smile on my face! There are so many exciting things going on here. I am looking forward to sharing them with you. I've met a few RSVP members as they came into the office to help with the Make A Difference Day packs. It was fascinating to have a conversation and understand why you love volunteering your time and talents to helping those in need. I so admire your commitment. If you are in the neighborhood of South Oneida Street, stop in and say hello. I can't shake your hand, nor can you see the big smile on my face under a mask, but I can certainly hand you some paint and rocks or a birdhouse kit so that you can do what you do best - making a difference in someone's life.

All the best,
Giving back is good for you, too! Older Americans who volunteer frequently live longer and report better health. Volunteering can also lead to more friendships and a more positive attitude.
'A day to ‘Make a Difference’
By Jeff Zdrale

For some people, Make a Difference Day may be something new. But it’s been around for almost 30 years. The USA Weekend publication suggested that because 1992 was a leap year, the extra day could be used for people to do something good. The idea quickly caught on all over the country. This day’s overall purpose is to help communities and individuals in need. Make a Difference Day is always set for the fourth Saturday in October. This year it is Oct. 24.

One person who has worked to make this happen for many years is Jean Blaney-McGinnis (pictured on left with Susan Vanden Heuvel, executive director of Volunteer Fox Cities). Blaney-McGinnis is the employee volunteer program specialist for all the ThedaCare facilities. She was quick to remind me, however, that the “person power” for these annual efforts comes from many other volunteers in addition to ThedaCare employees. Read more.
Hooks ‘n Needles to support Coats for Kids  
The Salvation Army - Fox Cities is teaming up with its sponsors, including WBAY-TV and Woodward radio stations, for the Coats for Kids campaign that runs through Oct. 30. 

Hooks ‘n Needles volunteers make knit and crocheted hats, mittens and scarves in conjunction with this campaign. Last year, they donated more than 1,000 items! As of Sept. 30, the Hooks ‘n Needles inventory includes: 
  • 423 hats 
  • 23 pairs of mittens 
  • 27 scarves 
  • 30 hat & mitten sets 
  • 6 hat & scarf sets 
  • 20 headbands 

This year, Hooks ‘n Needles volunteers can bring their donations of hats, scarves and mittens to Volunteer Fox Cities, where they will be distributed to participants of Coats for Kids. We will need donations by Monday, Oct. 26. 
Office hours: Monday-Thursday 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. and Friday 8 a.m.-noon. 

‘Spooktacular’ event seeking knit & crocheted items to give away
SOAR Fox Cities and WisconSibs are teaming up to provide participants and siblings a “Spooktacular” safe option this Halloween season on Wednesday, Oct. 28, from 5-7 p.m., at Palisades Park, off Valley Road in Menasha. For this Trunk or Treat event, trick-or-treaters will remain in their cars as they drive through the park enjoying the fun Halloween displays and antics of our partner organizations and businesses.

We would like Hooks ‘n Needles members to knit or crochet scarves, hats and headbands that will be given away. We would attach a safety reflective on these items, along with a tag that states, “Made for you with care by Hooks ‘n Needles.”

Please drop off your donated scarves and/or headbands at Volunteer Fox Cities by Wednesday, Oct. 21. Label your donations: “Trunk or Treat.” Office hours are Monday-Thursday 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. and Friday 8 a.m.-noon.

Our partner, Cycling Without Age, will be attending the event with its trishaw. If a Hooks ‘n Needles member would like to be a passenger in the trishaw dressed as a Spooky passenger from 5-7 p.m. on Wednesday, Oct. 28, at Palisades Park in Menasha, contact us at 920-832-9360 or for details. 

Hooks 'n Needles is spreading the love!

Thank you for the beautifully crocheted/knitted blankets you donated to the Appleton Police Department. Wow, what a talent you share! Our police officers will gift these to victims or others in need in the coming months and they are sure to provide warmth and comfort to the recipients. We so appreciate your ongoing generosity. Providing these homemade blankets makes our day and the days of those who receive them! I wish you a wonderful fall season!

  • Sincerely, Todd L. Thomas, Chief of Police
Volunteer opportunities

CHAIN REACTION (Communities Helping Adults In their Neighborhood): Seeking volunteers to rake leaves for the elderly and people with disabilities during October, mostly in the Appleton and Kaukauna area. Volunteers can coordinate a group or sign up individually for this flexible, no-contact volunteer opportunity. To volunteer, contact Penny Jane at

CASA of the Fox Cities: Seeking volunteers who will be paired with a child who has experienced abuse to provide support for that child while under the protection of the Child Welfare System. Having a CASA to support them improves safety for kids and ensures their needs are being met while in the system. Volunteers connect with the child weekly by phone or virtually. New Advocate Online Training Class begins Oct. 27. Contact Jill at  

Meal delivery driver: Some homebound seniors cannot get to the rural meal sites to receive their weekly meals in conjunction with Outagamie County Nutrition Program, which has reached capacity. We are looking for drivers to deliver GRAB N GO meals and frozen meals to homebound seniors in the Hortonville area on Wednesdays from roughly 9:15-10:30 a.m. Contact Jan at 920-832-9360 or

Guardianship Program: Some folks who live in their own home, group home or long-term care facility don’t have family or friends willing to help them make important life decisions. That is why we are seeking volunteer guardians – compassionate advocates who help make everyday living/health decisions for people who need them the most. Volunteers are not live-in or hands-on caregivers and do not provide financial assistance. For details on this Outagamie County program, contact Penny Jane at
St. Paul Elder Services: Seeking Meals on Wheels driver to pick up meals at 11 a.m. at St. Paul Elder Services’ back door (without entering facility). Most food will be delivered outside client’s door. Driver receives a folder with addresses, easiest route, directions and client’s phone number. Routes last 1-1.5 hour within 10-mile radius. Masks, gloves (changed at every delivery), hand sanitizer, plastic bags and carriers are provided. Contact Josie Troullier at 920-766-766-6020, ext. 108. 

Outagamie County Nutrition Program offers APPLETON GRAB N GO Meals for pickup by Outagamie County residents age 60 and older, regardless of income, on Wednesdays.

Beginning Nov. 4, The Grand Meridian GRAB N GO Meal Service in Appleton will relocate to the Thompson Center on Lourdes. 

In addition to GRAB N GO Meal Service, the Outagamie County Nutrition Program provides Frozen Meal Service during COVID-19, distributed from the Nutrition Program meal sites in Hortonville, Kaukauna and Seymour, where eligible homebound older residents receive five frozen meals weekly. In Appleton, Grand Chute and Kimberly, hot Home Delivered Meal Service is provided to eligible homebound older residents Monday through Friday.

Eligible residents must call in their weekly meal order to 920-209-4175 by noon the Monday prior to the Wednesday pickup and must complete a registration form that will be available on site or download a form here.  

For more information and to view October's schedule, click here.

Volunteer Fox Cities
2616 S.Oneida St. Suite 2

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