United Way's Project Blueprint program "provides people of color with the skills to become productive participants of civic boards and committees" says Fela Alfaro, dean of students at El Centro College in Dallas. The 40-hour course focuses on topics such as nonprofit board responsibility, leadership, and management skills.

"While families are busier than ever, they are still looking for ways to spend time together, teach important values, and share the experience of helping others," says Sara Meléndez, president and CEO of Independent Sector, which recently conducted a survey that showed that family volunteering is on the rise - 51 percent of the respondents said that they volunteer with a family member. Plus, kids who volunteer with their parents or other family members grow up to incorporate charitable activities into their own adult lives, and that's a good lesson with which to begin the new year.
Enter your zipcode on the VolunteerMatch Web site, www.volunteermatch.org, to find volunteer opportunities posted by thousands of nonprofit and tax-exempt organizations. For information about the organizations mentioned in this story, contact:

Endangered Species Media Projectwww.vanishingwildlife.com

Habitat for Humanity

Team in Training

The Peregrine Fund
(208) 362-8687 or www.peregrinefund.org

United Way's Project Blueprint

World Vision's 30 Hour Famine
(800) 732-6463 or www.30hourfamine.org