Website promotes nonprofits

Kristen Allen/The NewsRachelle Peck, junior of Salem, Ky.,, helps stock shelves at Needline. The non-profit organization is one of many involved with Get Connected.

Kristen Allen/The News
Rachelle Peck, junior of Salem, Ky.,, helps stock shelves at Needline. The non-profit organization is one of many involved with Get Connected.

At the end of last year, Murray State’s Office of Regional Outreach launched a new website making it easier for local residents to find nonprofit organizations looking for volunteers.

The website is called Get Connected and the program began with the help of a start-up grant from the Office of Regional Outreach.

Galaxy Digital, a company based in Asheville, N.C., worked with the Office of Regional Outreach, Aaron Dail, executive director of United Way of Murray-Calloway County and four other United Way agencies in western Kentucky to help establish the program.

Organizations can actively advertise their need for volunteers through Get Connected.

Regional Outreach Executive Director Gina Winchester said she and her staff are excited about the impact Get Connected will have on the University.

“Murray State is funding (Get Connected) for the first year to help get it running and connect volunteers to nonprofits in the region,” Winchester said.

According to the Get Connected website, there are 31 non-profit organizations in the county looking for volunteers who are willing to help invest in the community.

Some of the agencies looking for volunteers are Calloway County 4-H, Clean Air Murray, Humane Society of Calloway County, Murray-Calloway County Needline, Murray-Calloway County Hospital, United Way of Murray-Calloway County and West Kentucky Mentoring.

Through friendly competition between Eastern Kentucky University, Morehead State University and Murray State, students are using Get Connected to give back to the community.

Challenge for Change, a volunteer service-based competition, kicked off Jan. 12 and will end when Murray plays Morehead in men’s basketball Feb. 20.

Volunteer hours should be logged through Murray State’s Get Connected website.

Morehead Student Government Association President, Margo Hunt said hours could be sponsored by an organization and could take place within the community.

“As long as the student is actively giving back that’s all we care about,” Hunt said.

Meggie Goeke, junior from St. Louis, Mo., said Get Connected is helpful because it encourages volunteerism.

“The Get Connected website promotes a sense of community for each university and encourages its students to become actively involved in the philanthropic events each campus sponsors,” Goeke said.

Any student may participate and service hours can be collected until Feb. 19 at 5 p.m.

Goeke said: “The program is designed to give recognition to students who donate their time, money and resources to the Commonwealth and to cultivate a feeling of wanting to do more.”

Story by Meghann Anderson, News Editor.