Volunteer For Others And Yourself

Dear Volunteers,
Recently I read an article about how volunteering benefits the volunteer. It stated that when you volunteer, you are improving your life and maybe even your health. The article maintains that there are social, emotional, physical, and professional perks to volunteering.
These were some of the research-backed proven benefits of volunteering listed:
  • Builds Community
  • Ends Loneliness
  • Increases Socializing
  • Builds Bonds, Creates Friends
  • Develops Emotional Stability
  • Promotes Longevity
  • Reduces Risk of Alzheimer's
  • Leads to Graceful Aging
  • Burns That Stubborn Belly Fat
  • Develops Corporate Communities
  • Adds Fun to Your Years
We are beginning to recruit volunteers for next year. If you have a friend who would benefit from volunteering, encourage them to take the step, and send them our way.
Read the full article: 

Joan Whitson
ELC Early Literacy Coordinator
Sandi's Corner
Nursery rhymes are important for young children because they help develop an ear for our language. Both rhyme and rhythm help children hear the sounds and syllables in words, which helps them learn to read! From personal experience as an early learning educator, I know that this is true. My mission is to see that each child under the Early Learning Coalition's umbrella goes to Kindergarten knowing at least nine nursery rhymes. It is a big undertaking, but we are making progress. Reading Pals are diligently utilizing nursery rhymes in their programs and Mother Goose and the Mother Goose Sorority are presenting the Rhymers Are Readers' Program in centers. Because of the efforts of these dedicated volunteers more than 500 children are learning to rhyme. That is fantastic!!!
I have provided a link for you to download and copy a pictorial list of the ELC nursery rhymes. Children could color the picture when they learn the rhyme. I've included a certificate that you can copy and give to them when they have mastered all nine rhymes.
Happy Rhyming!!!
Free Books For Reading Pal Centers
Dates To Pick Up Books
The ELC has purchased books for Reading Pals to give to children in their story hour.Reading Pals are to email the number of books needed to Sandi Dunnavant if you are in Clay County and to Joan Whitson if in St. Johns or Putnam. Books will be available for pick up on the following dates for the following counties:
St. Johns - April 8th
Putnam - April 10th
Clay - April 24th
Volunteer Spotlight
Sandy Tebo
For over seven years, Sandy Tebo has been an active outreach volunteer. She helps in the office regularly assembling program materials, entering volunteer hours and putting book bags together. She also assists with ELC's Literacy Programs, and she often wears a costume. Originally from South Florida she now calls St Augustine home. ELC thanks Sandy for her time and dedication to the program .
Welcome New Volunteers
Reading Pals make a difference each week by sharing their love for reading with our local children. Nine new literacy and Reading Pals joined the ELC in St. Johns, Putnam and Clay counties. Welcome: Helen Miur, Diana Phillips, Mary Crawford, Lynn Roberson, Jane Gray, Melonie Kent, Tina Reimers, Debbie Smith, and Linda Welch. Helen Devitto, Nancy Klopfeinstein, and Sharon Nellis are members of the Village Improvement Association. Green Cove Springs Womens Club, who are now volunteering in our Literacy Programs. A warm welcome to you all!!!!
Mother Goose Sorority
Sheila Turbet and Susan Murphy are no longer pledges of the Mother Goose Sorority. They were made official members at the Early Learning Coalition's Board meeting, March 13. Sheila and Susan have completed the Mother Goose training and have presented two programs by themselves. Each received the official Mother Goose Sorority pin and special "Honks" from the ELC Board.
The Early Learning Coalition is searching for more pledges for the Mother Goose Sorority. The requirements are: attend a training session, monitor a Mother Goose Program, obtain a costume, consent to give four programs a year, follow a prepared script, have good crowd control, enjoy working with a team and of course.....be able to honk.Upon completion of the requirements, pledges are inducted into the Sorority.  If interested, please contact the Head Honker, Sandi at sdunnavant@elcnorthflorida.org
Thank You Clay Electric, Reinhold Foundation, Kiwanis Club of St Augustine
The ELC would like to say Thank You to Clay Electric, the Reinhold Foundation, and the Kiwanis Club of St Augustine. Because of their generous support to their communities, children and teachers have received free books, free teacher resources, and free literary programs. The ELC can provide more services to children and teachers because of their substantial funding.
Literacy Themed Programs
The ELC outreach staff and volunteers have had a busy Fall and Winter presenting themed literacy programs. The Dinosaur Program was launched in the Fall of 2018 and is a big hit. Ten Meet the Masters Art Programs were given to pre-k classes in St. Augustine at Crookshank and Southwoods Elementary. Other popular programs are Space , Celebrate Colors and Mother Goose . Recently, the Let's Dance Program was launched at Baker Couny's Pre K Kindergarten, Over 180 students enjoyed the movement program and dancing with a flamingo.All programs contain a short story time followed by activities relating to the program theme. Each child receives a FREE book and the teacher receives a resource bag of materials relating to that theme for their classroom. ELC Outreach Volunteers are crucial to the success of these programs because they help with the activities, read and even wear costumes. Contact Joan or Sandi to sign up to participate!
Volunteer Hours

´╗┐Please fill out and return the ELC volunteer hours worksheet each month. Sheets are available at all three lending library offices or they can be sent electronically.

Return to the offices or email or fax them to Joan. 904-342-2268 (fax) or  jwhitson@elcnorthflorida.org

Why Time Sheets Are Valuable

´╗┐  According to the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), the value of volunteer services can be disclosed in a nonprofit's financial statements for grant proposals, annual reports and other purposes. FASB states that non-monetary information, such as the number of donated hours or services provided by volunteers, can be helpful in assessing the success and long-term viability of a nonprofit. Using this hourly figure, an organization can put a dollar value on the community support that it receives in the form of volunteer work .
Dr Seuss
At the Early Educators Conference, in January, the ELC held a drawing for seven child care centers to receive a Dr. Seuss program during the month of March in honor of Dr. Seuss's birthday. The programs included a story time with a special guest, The Cat in the Hat, and hands-on activities that related to different Dr. Seuss books. Each child received a FREE Dr. Seuss book. The teacher received a set of ten Dr Seuss books for their classroom and a teaching guide. These programs would NOT be possible without ELC volunteers. They make these programs come alive with their animated story telling and fun child interaction
Early Learning Teachers' Conference
Saturday, January 26th the ELC held it's 5th annual Early Educators Conference at the Thrasher Horne Center in Orange Park. Each year the ELC brings in a keynote speaker and provides a variety of break out sessions applicable to early childhood education. The attendees receive continuing credit hours for attending. This year the speaker was Richard Cohen. The theme was "Early Educators" The Heroes of our Time! Thanks to the group of Clay volunteers that put all the attendee bags together and who came and helped with registration.
The 2018 Pre-school Teacher of the Year was recently honored at the ELC Early Educators Conference. The winner was Angie Picket of Sugar and Spice Learning Center in Orange Park. Angie was surprised in December with a prize patrol visit by ELC Mascot Elsie the Dinosaur. She received a $500 cash prize thanks to Kaplan Early Learning Company our teacher of the year sponsor. 
Support the Ferst Foundation
 The Ferst Foundation is a program that provides books to children ages 0-5. An age appropriate book is sent to the child each month in the mail until they are 5. Anyone can sign up a child for this program for just $40 a year by visiting:  www.ferstfoundation.org .  Organizations can also buy books for targeted children for only $36.00 a year per child. The ELC of North Florida currently pays for the children receiving our subsidized child care aid in Baker, Bradford and Nassau Counties to receive these books. The Kiwanis Club of St. Augustine and the Sertoma Club will soon be partnering together to sponsor 100 children yearly who attend the Brandts Child Care center in St. Augustine. Ninety per cent of the children who attend there are receiving ELC assistance. Visit  www.ferstfoundation.org  for more information about this wonderful program.
Early Learning Training Conference
February 26th, Outreach manager Joan Whitson and Outreach Assistant Sandi Dunnavant attended the Early Learning Coalition Conference in Gainesville. Joan and Sandi presented a workshop about the Ourreach Program of the ELC.
ELC Of North Florida News
Did you know the ELC's in the state of florida provide child care subsidies to low income families who are working or going back to school? The ELC also manages the FREE VPK (voluntary pre-k program) for the state. The ELC of North Florida covers Clay, Putnam, St. Johns, Nassau, Baker and Bradford Counties. The ELC of North Florida contracts out with Episcopal Children's Services to manage these two programs. There is a local office in each of the six counties where families can register for services. Parents wanting to register their child for VPK do so by registering on line at:  https://familyservices.floridaearlylearning.com/
Sponsorship by the Early Learning Coalition of North Florida and Florida's Office of Early Learning
Early Learning Coalition of North Florida | 904-342-2267 sdunnavant@elcnorthflorida.org
Administrative Office: 2450 Old Moultrie Road, Ste. 103
St. Augustine, FL 32086