Circle K at the University of Michigan

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Organizations We Work With

Alzheimers Association
The Alzheimer's Association is the world leader in Alzheimer research and support. Since its founding in 1980, it have provided more than $150 million to support research into the prevention, treatment and eventual cure for Alzheimer's. Their nationwide network of chapters offer frontline support to individuals affected by Alzheimer's with services that include 24/7 information and referral, safety services, and education and support groups.

Their vision is a world without Alzheimer's disease. Their mission is to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research and to enhance quality care and support for individuals, their families and care partners.

For more information, visit the Alzheimer's Association website.
  • Memory Walk: Volunteers help at this great event by directing traffic and other coordination tasks. This event takes place in October.

American Lung Association
The American Lung Association was founded in 1904 to fight tuberculosis. The American Lung Association today fights lung disease in all its forms, focusing especially on asthma, tobacco control, and environmental health. The Open Airways for Schools program teaches elementary school children with asthma to understand and manage their illness. The American Lung Association also has several smoking control and prevention programs. To help eliminate tobacco use among youth, the American Lung Association has developed the Teens Against Tobacco Use (TATU) program. In addition, the American Lung Association works to combat air pollution, provides grants and awards for lung disease research, has advocacy programs to influence laws and regulations related to lung health, and offers programs to educate the general public about the impact and prevention of lung disease.

For more information, visit American Lung Association's website.

Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum
The mission of the Ann Arbor Hands-On Museum is to provide an opportunity for people of all ages to discover and enjoy the wonder of science, math and technology in an interactive environment that promotes science literacy through experimentation, exploration and education.

For more information, visit Ann Arbor Hands-On Mueseum's website.
  • Special Events: Throughout the year, the Hands-On Museum holds special events for children to learn. Circle K members help in various ways to make sure the event runs smoothly.

Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation
The City of Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation provides municipal services for the intelligent use of natural resources in order to enhance the quality of life for Ann Arbor residents. The association values an open environment that fosters fair, sensitive, and respectful treatment of all Ann Arbor employees and the community.

For more information, visit the City of Ann Arbor Parks and Recreation website.
  • Huron River Clean-up: This project is a favorite among Circle K'ers and takes place while canoeing down the Huron River. Enjoy the outdoors and canoe trip while picking up refuse in the river.

Ann Arbor YMCA
The Ann Arbor YMCA strives to put Judeo-Christian principles into practice through programs that build a healthy spirit, mind, and body. The organization offers instruction in athletics, dance, yoga, and martial arts, as well as teen programs, camps, and child-care.

The Ann Arbor YMCA’s Youth Volunteer Corps is a youth-driven leadership program that fosters growth and responsibility among middle- and high- school students by providing them with opportunities to engage in service-learning activities. The association also runs a tutoring program for middle school students, a recreation center for teenagers, and an adventure outings series.

For more information, visit Ann Arbor YMCA's website.
  • Fall Open House: The YMCA holds an open house for their kids at which there are lots of activities for the children. Volunteers are needed to supervise the children and help with activities such as obstacle courses and face painting. This event takes place in September.

Dance Marathon
Dance Marathon is a campus organization that can be found at colleges and universities across the nation. Like many others, the University of Michigan Dance Marathon is highly successful in fulfilling its goals. In only our sixth year of operation we raised over $197,000, bringing the overall total raised to well over $700,000 over the organization's history. Dance Marathon brings together thousands of dancers and volunteers under the banner of making a difference in the lives of children needing physical rehabilitation. Funds raised by Dance Marathon support programs that are holistic in nature, a distinctive feature of the organization. This therapy approach combines traditional occupational rehabilitation along with non-traditional programs that address children's physical, social, emotional therapy needs. These programs would cease to exist without our continued support and efforts.

The University of Michigan Dance Marathon is a year-round organization that sponsors many individual events geared toward raising funds and awareness for the children we support. Dance Marathon hosts many unique social, educational, and fundraising events throughout the year. Dance Marathon participants have the opportunity to interact with the children and families at numerous Dance Marathon events. In addition, volunteers also have the chance to go to sponsored hospitals to build relationships with the wonderful children supported by Dance Marathon. Along with the many events that unite students and families, Dance Marathon also holds dozens of on-campus events.

For more information, visit the University of Michigan's Dance Marathon website.
  • Dance Marathon: During the actual Dance Marathon, dancers will remain on their feet for thirty hours. Live music, DJs, cultural performances, games, craft tables, and the occasional massage keep the party going. In all, over 3,000 dancers, volunteers, moralers, and visitors participate in Dance Marathon each year. During the Marathon, students get the opportunity to interact with the benefiting children and families. Participants are kept motivated by dancing alongside the children and hearing inspirational stories from families. Circle K members can volunteer by becoming a dancer, moraler, or volunteer for the event. The Dance Marathon takes place in March.

Gleaners Food Bank
Gleaners is a vital link between available food and those who need it most. Local and national producers have surplus food that may otherwise go to waste for lack of a way to safely and efficiently bring it to market. Human service agencies face tight budgets and increasing demand for services. Their expertise and facilities bring these valuable resources together to help ease the problem of hunger.

Gleaners collects, warehouses, repacks and distributes many millions of pounds of food for over 300 local member agencies. These agencies pick up food from Gleaners in convenient amounts for use in serving meals, preparing food packages and stocking food pantries.

Member agencies count on Gleaners as a reliable source of dry food like pasta and cereal, all manner of canned food, fresh or frozen meats and produce, even sundries like paper towels and cleaning supplies. The combination of food resources, Gleaners and its member agencies create remarkable results: nearly 24 million meals last year for hungry people of southeastern Michigan.

For more information, visit Gleaners Community Food Bank's website.

Green Baxter Court Community Center
The Green Baxter Court Community Center is a public housing site for low income families. There are 24 single family townhouses. The Center's mission is to provide comprehensive research-based family support services that enhance residens' capacity to grow and develop as individuals and as a community.
  • Visits: Circle K plans arts and craft projects to do with the children after school throughout the year.

Habitat For Humanity
Habitat for Humanity is a non-profit, Christian housin organization. Their goal is to build simple, decent, and affordable houses in partnership with those families who lack adequate shelter. They also teach the families how to take care of their new house. This organization has been building thousands of houses since 1976 in the United States and 91 other countries all over the world. These houses help to eliminate poverty and homelessness from the world. Circle K spends certain Saturdays in Detroit with U of M's Habitat for Humanity to help build houses for deserving families.

For more information, visit Habitat for Humanity's website.
  • Workdays: Throughout the year, Habitat for Humanity asks Circle K to help at different worksites in the state. Tasks can range from construction to dry-walling.

HIV/AIDS Resource Center
The HIV/AIDS Resource Center or "HARC" is a private non-profit organization that was founded in 1986 in order to provide HIV services to people of Washtenaw, Jackson, Livinston and Lenawee counties. It is a volunteer based organization and the only comprehensive AIDS service organization for people in these four counties. Its mission is to provide HIV related services to the community through compassionate, direct care, prevention, and outreach activities.

For more information, visit the HIV/AIDS Resource Center's website.
  • Fundraiser Dinner and Auction: This event was hosted at Palio's in 2004 and will probably continue as an annual fundraiser. Circle K members are needed to assist with the auction and other aspects of the fundraiser. This event takes place in March.
  • HIV/AIDS Walk: Help with the annual AIDS walk by supplying water and morale to the walkers! This event usually takes place in late September.

Holmes Elementary School
General Information: Holmes Elementary is a public school located in nearby Ypsilanti. Their mission statement is "The Holmes Elementary School Community is dedicated to providing an environment that nurtures academic, social and personal excellence." Holmes Elementary strives to fulfill their pledge of "As a part of the Holmes Community, I am kind, helpful, responsible, and respectful. I am a gift to my community, and I can make a difference."

For more information, please visit Holmes Elementary School's website.
  • Book Night: Book Night is an event to promote reading at Holmes Elementary School. Circle K gives the kids previews of some books and then does activities that relate to the books, like making ice cream sundaes and finger painting! Come and help run activities with the'll be a lot of fun for everyone! This event takes place in April.
  • Mentorship: Circle K has a special mentorship program set up with Holmes Elementary School. If you are interested or want more information, please e-mail our Mentorship Committee Chair at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Home of New Vision
Home of New Vision is an organization that provides a structured, safe environment for women committed to ongoing recovery from chemical dependency. Their goal is to assist the client in building self-esteem and realizing her full potential becoming a productive, responsible, self-sufficient member of society. Home of New Vision is accomplishing this mission by providing transitional housing and outpatient treatment for women committed to recovery from chemical dependency.

For more information, visit Home of New Vision's website.

Hope Medical Clinic / Oasis Café
Hope Medical Clinic provides free general medical, free pediatric care, and specialized clinics to those without insurance or medical benefits. Many physicians, physician assistants/nurse practitioners, and registered nurses volunteer their time on a rotating basis. In 2001, 3,696 hours of professional service were donated. Hope also has a network of physicians who take specialty referrals. The Clinic treated 5,042 patients in 2001, and dispensed over 7,945 prescriptions from the pharmacy located on site.

Hope Medical Clinic teams up with the nearby Oasis Café to provide food to low-income families and idividuals.

For more information, visit the Hope Medical Clinic / Oasis Café website.
  • Serving at the Oasis Café: Circle K members are needed throughout the year to participate as wait-staff at the Oasis Café. All proceeds from this restaurant go to charity.

    To find out about additional volunteer opportunities with Hope Medical Center or Oasis Café, you can contact Jean Horak, the HMC/OC Volunteer Coordinator, at 734-485-5595.

Humane Society of Huron Valley
The Humane Society's mission is to find a permanent home for every adoptable animal in their care and prevent cruelty to animals. They offer a variety of positive animal/pet services to our service area, Washtenaw county. The shelter is open to the public 7 days a week from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. There is also a emergency response crew on call 24-7.

For more information, visit the Humane Society of Huron Valley's website.
  • Animal Care: Circle K members can help at the Humane Society by helping the staff with the daily cleaning of kennels, ensuring all animals are comfortable with beds, toys, and fresh water. Volunteers also spend time with individual animals: walking dogs, petting cats, grooming and brushing. If the animals are happy to see people, they are more adoptable. A groomed appearance is also useful - and more comfortable! This volunteer opportunity requires special training.

Hunger Coalition
The mission of the Ann Arbor Hunger Coalition is to provide free nutritious, hot meals in the evening to those with out means to provide for themselves. Meals are served in a manner that respects the dignity of all individuals. All are welcome at the meal without any procedure for “screening for need.”

The Hunger Coalition also serves to be a part of a network of online resources and groups in the Ann Arbor area, concerned about poverty and hunger. They also provide a means for acquiring help in the form of new volunteers or donations.

For more information, visit the Hunger Coalition's website.
  • Meal Preparation: We help prepare the meal that will be served to the hungry people of Ann Arbor. Generally we cook for 100 to 150 people.
  • Meal Serving: We serve a meal to 100-150 residents of Ann Arbor that cannot afford to buy food themselves.

Joy Field Caregivers
An inter-faith coalition joining hands in service to the elderly around Detroit by providing information and service that foster their social, physical, emotional and spiritual needs. Joyfield Caregivers provide medical transportation, grocery shopping, grocery pick-up and other transportation that promotes well being for the elderly.
  • Assistance: Circle K helps promote independent living by helping out with various tasks for the elderly. Volunteers can make reassurance phone calls, help with minor home maintenance (which includes yard work, light housekeeping, inside and outside painting), or clearing snow from driveways.

This organization knits and distributes hats, mittens, scarves, slippers and blankets for those who need protection from the cold of northern winters. These items are needed by domestic abuse shelters, agencies serving the homeless, community centers, veterans, teen mothers and their babies, children caught in the conflicts of inner cities and families on Indian reservations and in the mountains of Appalachia.

For more information, visit Knitwit's website.

Leslie Science Center
The Leslie Science Center provides natural science and environmental education opportunities for youth and their families. The Center is situated on 50 acres of fields, woods and prairie in the heart of Ann Arbor. The education programs are outdoors, hands-on and discovery-based and are offered for school groups, scouts, and the general public.
  • Animal Haunts: Help the Leslie Science Center prepare for one of their biggest activites. There is a variety of activities: clearing trails, creating a maze in the prairie, carving pumpkins, etc. This event takes place in October.
  • Bug Fest: Join the Leslie Science center in this "insect extravaganza" during which the center will help teach kids about the lives of insects. This event takes place in September and volunteers are needed to supervise the children and help them with the activities of the day.
  • Tiny Tots: Come help the Leslie Science Center with their toddler program. Volunteers are needed to help play with the kids outdoors. There are fun filled hands-on nature activities. Circle K members help the kids discover and explore fields, forests and fauna with hikes, songs, stories, puppets, games, crafts and critters.

March of Dimes
March of Dimes researchers, volunteers, educators, outreach workers and advocates work together to give all babies a fighting chance against the threats to their health: prematurity, birth defects, low birthweight.

For more information, visit the March of Dimes' website.
  • Jail 'N Bail: This is an annual fundraiser we help out with for the organization. People are put in "jail" and have to ask family members to "bail" them out through donations to the March of Dimes. Circle Kers help out in a variety of ways including logistics and clean up.

Matthaei Botanical Gardens
Matthaei Botanical Gardens is situated on a lush 350-acre oasis of diverse plant life. Outdoor nature trails wind through various habitats native to Michigan while the indoor Conservatory fascinates visitors of all ages with a rare glimpse of plants from around the world. The Gardens sponsors classes, lectures, and special events, making it an educational resource of great beauty.

The mission of the Matthaei Botanical Gardens is to study and disseminate knowledge of plants as they exist in nature, contribute to human culture, and support life on Earth.

For more information, visit the Matthaei Botanical Garden's website.

Motor Meals
This is a non-profit, volunteer agency, partially sponsored by the University of Michigan Health systems. Their mission is to provide delivered meals for the frail, elderly, and disabled of Ann Arbor so that they can remain in their homes with dignity. Clients are on a schedule, in which they can receive lunch and dinner daily.

Motor Meals also takes into consideration the needs of Diabetics and those with special diets. Volunteers use their own cars and will deliver to 10-17 people per week.

For more information, visit the Motor Meals website.
  • Meal Delivery: Every Saturday morning, Circle K delivers meals to homebound residents of Ann Arbor. The people on our route are very friendly and we always have a good time. Usually two people attend this project every week.

Mott Childrens Hospital
Mott is one of the nation’s leading pediatric institutions, known for excellence in clinical and research programs. The hospital provides quality specialized services for sick and injured children from Michigan, and around the globe.

As part of the University of Michigan Health System, Mott integrates clinical care, education, advocacy, and research to advance the health status of children, their families and communities statewide. On the floors of Mott, there are also many recreation areas for the children to help alleviate the pain of being in a hospital. Mott prides itself on being a hospital where children come first.

For more information, visit the Mott Children's Hospital.

Nature Area Preservation
Natural Area Preservation (NAP) works to protect and restore Ann Arbor’s natural areas and foster an environmental ethic among its citizens. This involves conducting plant and animal inventories, ecological monitoring, and a variety of stewardship projects in Ann Arbor parks. These tasks are performed by both staff and volunteers. One third of NAP’s field work is done by volunteers, so community involvement is vital to the success of our conservation efforts. NAP projects take volunteers well beyond the realm of litter clean-up into broader areas of concern, such as maintaining biodiversity and restoring damaged ecosystems.

Through the combination of hands-on involvement and scientific understanding, we hope to encourage and support a connection between individual volunteers and their surrounding natural environment. By sharing this experience with friends and neighbors, volunteers also play an important role in fostering an environmental ethic in the community.
  • Clean-ups: Throughout the year, Circle K participates in cleaning sessions for local parks in Ann Arbor. If you love the outdoors and nature, this project is a must!

Neutral Zone
The Neutral Zone is a youth-oriented, youth-advised place which offers a fun, entertaining, safe environment for teenagers to meet with friends and meet new people, learn new things and satisfy their need for a home away from home; a place to call their own during high risk hours.

For more information, visit the Neutral Zone's website.
  • Clean-up: Once a month we head over to the Neutral Zone and help the teens clean up the place. It's a good time to meet and talk with the teens and maybe answer some questions they may have about college and life in general.
  • Cooking Session: This project involves helping to make a meal for the kids who are at the Neutral Zone. The teens are really appreciative and it's a lot of fun putting the whole meal together with other Circle Kers.
  • Neutral Zone Dinner Preparation: The Neutral Zone is a youth-oriented, youth-advised place which offers a fun, entertaining, safe environment for teenagers to meet with friends and meet new people, learn new things, and a place to call their own during high risk hours. The Zone draws youth from throughout the region. The center is open to all high-school-age young people. We will be helping to prepare dinner for about 20 high school students there. It will definitely be a lot of fun to meet some cool people there. Questions?? Comments?? E-mail our Hunger/Housing/Environmental Service Chair at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Parkridge Community Center
The Parkridge Community Center is a place where children in Ypsilanti can do many activities. There are activities for children in elementary school through high school. There is an exercise sports club, and other drop-in activities for children and students in this area of Washtenaw County.

Peace Neighborhood Center
The Peace Neighborhood Center, located in Ann Arbor, works to help families, children, and individuals who are experiencing social and economic problems. The center has been operating since 1971, providing assistance to needy people to help them overcome poverty and become self-sufficient individuals. The center has programs that provide substance abuse prevention and recovery support, advocacy, emergency assistance, and employment services. The center also offers programs for youth such as tutoring and educational support, computer training, gang and violence prevention, substance abuse prevention, college/career planning, and a summer day camp program. Our Circle K helps out with enrichment programs for the children at the Peace Neighborhood Center.

For more information, visit the Peace Neighborhood Center's website.

Recycle Ann Arbor
Founded in 1977 as a private nonprofit organization, Recycle Ann Arbor is dedicated to providing education and innovative services in the collection, processing and distribution of recyclable materials.

Nationally recognized as an established leader in recycling programs, Recycle Ann Arbor has been instrumental in diverting recyclable waste from landfills and reducing pressure on natural resources. In 2002, Recycle Ann Arbor recovered and recycled more than 28 million pounds of material.

Recycle Ann Arbor is committed to developing innovative recycling programs that will limit the abundance of reusable materials from ending up in landfills every year while supporting initiatives to improve the environmental quality of our community through recovery, reuse, recycling and effective energy use.

For more information, visit Recycle Ann Arbor's website.

Red Cross
The American Red Cross, a humanitarian organization founded in 1881, was modeled after the International Red Cross. Clara Barton helped to organize the American Red Cross, which was created to serve America in peace and in war, to help during periods of disaster and national calamity, and to provide disaster relief on battlefields. Today, the American Red Cross aims to save lives and ease suffering. The organization provides relief to victims of disaster, gives health and safety training to the public, and offers emergency social services to United States military members and their families. The American Red Cross also provides half of the nation’s blood supply and blood products through blood and bone marrow drives held across the entire country.

For more information, visit the Red Cross' website.

Riverview Nursing Home
Riverview is a small nursing home in Ann Arbor. Many elderly people who live there (as well as the employees) would love for us to come and hang out with them, or help out in other ways.
  • Visits: A fantastic project where we visit and work on crafts with a local nursing home. We have different activities planned every week. It's interactive and very rewarding!

Ronald McDonald House
The purpose of the House is to provide comfort for families of children receiving critical medical care, to encourage togetherness between children and their families and to offer the tender support of other residents and community volunteers. Each year, the House serves more than 700 families.

Guests stay at the House for a minimal fee if they are able to pay, but no family is turned away. Since the Ronald McDonald House opened in Philadelphia in 1974, more than 170 Houses have been licensed to provide a “home away from home” for families seeking treatment for a seriously ill child.

For more information, visit the Ronald McDonald House of Ann Arbor's website.
  • Meal Preparation: Help plan and cook a meal for over 40 residents of Ronald McDonald House. It's a chance to meet some great people while supporting a fantastic cause. Cooking skills not required!

Salvation Army
The Salvation Army is an integral part of the Christian Church, although distinctive in government and practice. The Army’s doctrine follows the mainstream of Christian belief and its articles of faith emphasise God’s saving purposes. Its objects are ‘the advancement of the Christian religion… of education, the relief of poverty, and other charitable objects beneficial to society or the community of mankind as a whole.’

The Salvation Army serves over 109 countries around the world. Raised to evangelise, the Army spontaneously embarked on schemes for the social betterment of the poor. Such concerns have since developed, wherever the Army operates, in practical, skilled and cost-effective ways. Evolving social services meet endemic needs and specific crises worldwide. Modern facilities and highly-trained staff are employed.

For more information, visit the Salvation Army of Washtenaw County's website.
  • Food Sorting: Periodically, the Salvation Army needs help sorting food items for their food bank.

Sequoia Place
Sequoia Place was opened in 1996 to provide housing for the elderly in Ann Arbor. It is a safe, quiet community for senior citizens to live and socialize in.

Sequoia Place is a three-story low-income development managed by Lutheran Social Services of Michigan, a partnership between Trinity and Zion Lutheran churches and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
  • Computer Help: We assist the residents of Sequoia Place with using the computers in their small computer lab. Most of the seniors are interested in setting up and using email to stay in contact with their family and friends. (No special computer knowledge necessary)
  • Mock Grocery Store: The first Saturday of every month we assist the elderly at Sequoia Place by unpacking and carrying food supplied by Food Gatherers. We set up a mock grocery store for the residents to shop at; most of the residents have a very small monthly income and rely on this service to have food.

St. Louis Center
The St. Louis Center is a caring, residential community for individuals with developmental disabilities. The St. Louis Center residents live with in the community 24 hours a day during the week. A typical day involves school or work, domestic chores, sports, and other activities. Many of their residents spend weekends with their families. In addition, they organize and hold many special activities.

For more information, visit the St. Louis Center's website.
  • Visits: Like playing basketball? Get ready to play against some enthusiastic boys at the St. Louis Center. Visits take place periodically throughout the year.

Washtenaw Literacy
Washtenaw Literacy’s purpose is straightforward: they help adults change their lives through literacy. Their organization has over 30 years experience in helping men and women improve their reading, writing and English as a second language skills.

Their core program is one-on-one tutoring. This is the approach our first volunteer tutors used in 1971. The reason they still use it today is because it works. Over 90% of adults in their one-on-one tutoring program reach one or more of their goals. Part of this success stems from their “designer tutor” approach. They train each of the volunteer tutors to plan lessons according to the learner’s strengths, needs and goals. Adult learners in the program are motivated because they are setting, and meeting, their own standards for success. This focus on individual goals makes their program unique in the county. Washtenaw Literacy is a critical part of the community’s educational continuum.

For more information, visit Washtenaw Literacy's website.

Ypsilanti Senior Center
The Ypsilanti Senior Center provides many different services for senior citizens living in Ypsilanti. Daily programs are offered at the senior center to help fulfill the needs of senior citizens. These programs provide all types of educational, recreational, social, and leisure activities for Ypsilanti’s senior citizen population. The senior center offers activities such as billiards and card games, woodcarving and exercise classes, and foot massages. In addition to its daily activities, the center also provides other services and activities for seniors including daily lunches, an on-going library program, BINGO games, a country band concert each week, and a monthly evening supper.