Mission Statement: The PV Volunteers are an ecumenical community of diverse individuals. By providing a service experience in a variety of settings, we respond to human need, form relationships and encourage change and growth both in ourselves and with those we serve.

Visit our website to find out more: www.pvprogram.org


Monday, December 29, 2014

2014 What a Wonderful Year


As we close out 2014, we thought we would take the time to reflect on the year that was and thank you again  for “being a part of it.”

We kicked off the service year in March, as we have for last 16 years, with Northern Illinois University’s Spring Break Service Trip to Wyoming County. The students provided much-needed home repair for three  young families and assisted with programing at Head Start, St. Vincent de Paul, and the Itmann Food Bank. Encouraging young people in their commitment to serving others is a vital part of the PV mission, and we are delighted to see both spring break and summer volunteers going on to further volunteer assignments.

In April, the PVs spent a week in Seattle, Washington. This year the traveling volunteers were joined by five PVs from the Seattle area.  The volunteers served at a local soup kitchen, worked at St. Francis house (where Seattle residents can
receive food, clothing, and housewares), assisted with projects at both Our Lady of Guadalupe Church and School, and joined relief efforts in Oso, Washington, which faced devastation and loss due to mudslides that had claimed 35 lives the month before.

As June rolled around, we headed back to Wyoming County, West Virginia for our 17th summer. It was another great summer of service, community, and reflection. We carried out emergency repairs to keep families in 25 homes, assisted with programs at Glen Rogers Manor, Itmann Food Bank, and St. Vincent de Paul, and conducted
our always popular basketball camp for children.

PV service in Bedford Stuyvesant continues throughout the year with meetings of Women’s Empowerment Brooklyn (WEB), the young women’s empowerment group, which is celebrating its 8th year. WEB is able to continue thanks to a small group of dedicated local PVs and a very committed group of young women. The program continues to have a positive presence in the lives of all involved: Women from WEB volunteer as PVs in West Virginia, and also in
their own community, and the PV mentors help with college applications and interview skills, as well as support for WEB families.

The PVs headed to Aurora, Illinois, in September for our second annual service program. PVs served at Hesed House, a shelter and transitional living program that provides temporary housing for individuals and families experiencing homelessness, assisted with ESL classes through World Relief, performed many needed repairs at St. Rita’s parish, and assisted My Father’s Hands and Emmanuel House with repairs for local residents.

As a small organization trying to make a large impact, we ask for your help for our continued sustainability.  Your tax-deductible year end gift is greatly needed to allow us to continue to provide a volunteer experience for the hundreds of PVs who serve with us, and the many people who lives are impacted by the service provided by our compassionate and dedicated volunteers.

Your continued generosity and enthusiasm enable us to do great things.

Jenny and Jill

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Merry Christmas from the PV Volunteers!!!

May you have the gladness of Christmas which is hope; the spirit of Christmas which is peace; the heart of Christmas which is love. 
Ada V. Hendricks

Wishing all our volunteers and supporters a wonderful Holiday Season!!

Jill and Jenny 



Monday, December 22, 2014

WEB Christmas Party

This past week, Women's Empowerment Brooklyn (WEB) gathered for their annual Christmas party. This 11 year tradition brings together the young ladies, the leaders and now their children! Food was consumed, laughter was shared and a Secret Santa gift sharing took place. These gathering have always been a special time for the group. Many thanks to our hosts!!!



Wednesday, December 17, 2014

WEB Lends a Hand

WEB, Womens Empowerment Brooklyn, the young womens group the PVs started 11 years ago is still going strong. One besides providing a safe place to talk about life's triumphs and struggles, the young ladies have always tried to engage in their community with service. Whether it is helping with the PVs Peace Camp or serving meals at a local soup kitchen, they have had a positive impact in their community.

A few weeks ago a call for help was made for a few extra hands to unload a tractor trailer full of 1,000 turkeys and canned good to be distributed in the community just in time for Thanksgiving. Members of WEB as well as a young gentleman who was one of our original junior counselors for PEACE camp worked alongside 30 others to unload the truck in record time. We are so proud of all of you! You are an example to us all to give back to our own neighborhoods.





Wednesday, December 3, 2014

PVs Participate in Gratitude Tuesday

PVs took to their social media accounts yesterday on Giving Tuesday, and took part in the "unselfie" movement to promote how they give back, specifically as PVs. Using pictures, posts and tweets the work of the PVs was spread throughout the land. Thanks to all who helped!!!











Tuesday, December 2, 2014

GivingTuesday

On this GivingTuesday, we want to thank and recognize the many wonderful people who call themselves PVs. Being a PV means you are part of something bigger than yourself. You have deliberately chosen to be part of a community, living simply, being of service in whatever way you can- always with an open heart and a listening ear, and reflecting on these experiences and figuring out ways to bring these experiences home with you. Thank you to the hundreds of people who are part of the PV family. Your generosity and compassion is an example and inspiration to all!

Some smiling faces of our wonderful volunteers during service in West Virginia, Brooklyn, Seattle and Aurora:









Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Gratitude

Gratitude helps you to grow and expand; gratitude brings joy and laughter into your life and into the lives of all those around you.
Eileen Caddy

In this season of Thanksgiving, we wanted all who are a part of the PV family. Your generosity, your willingness to reach out and be a presence in the lives of others is an example to all. Thank you for all that you have given to the PVs, whether it be your time, your prayers or financial contributions. All are appreciated and much needed. You have helped us grow and expand, and have certainly brought joy and laughter into our lives.

Our best to you and your family this Thanksgiving.

In gratitude,
Jill and Jenny

Monday, November 3, 2014

Texas Hold'em Poker Tournament to Benefit the PVs



PV, John Paul Duphiney, is holding his annual Texas Hold'em Poker Tournament to benefit the PV Volunteers. If you are in the area, come and join in on the fun! Below are the details that John Paul put on Facebook about the event. If you have any questions you can contact him at johnpaulduphiney@gmail.com.

Saturday Nov. 29th at 4pm
Miami Mike’s Sports Zone – East Hanover, NJ
 

Mark your calendars!!! This is the 4th year we are doing it & I can't thank enough the people that donated & played in the tourney last year! Your generosity is truly appreciated as we raised $2,500! Last summer's program was a success!

$100 buy in – 40% of total prize pool goes directly to the PV’s – 60% goes to winners of tournament. Payouts will be determined by how many people are in the tournament. It's at Miami Mike's with a room directly attached to the sports zone. So there will TV's & the lounge/bar literally right there.

Even if you can't/don't want to participate, we are accepting donations.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

2014 PV Reunion Evaluation Weekend

This past weekend, 30 PVs gathered in Lavallette, NJ to reconnect and share ideas of how to make the PV program better than ever. There were lively discussions, wonderful ideas and refreshed excitement about the program. Thank you to all who attended, and to Fina and William for hosting the weekend gathering! Below is a short slideshow video of pictures capturing the weekend. Enjoy!

video

Monday, September 29, 2014

Mini PV Reunion in North Jersey

This past weekend there was a mini impromptu reunion of PVs in Clark, NJ. It is always a great time when PVs are able to connect during the year. Both young and not quite as young gathered together and enjoyed what looks to be an awesome cake!

If this reunion makes you long for time with your PV family, remember the official PV Evaluaiton/Reunion Weekend will be taking place October 10-12 in Lavallette, NJ. If you are planning on coming, please RSVP by October 1st. We would love to see you there!




Friday, September 19, 2014

Thank You, Aurora



Thank You

We wanted to send a big THANK YOU to all the organizations that we worked with during our week in Aurora. The collaboration between all of these agencies is quite impressive. Please take the time and read about these amazing organizations by following the links to their webpages:


Hesed House - Hesed House's mission is to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless and give people the chance to hope again. Hesed House is a national model for ending homelessness – one person, one family at a time. It is the culmination of nearly three decades of strategic evolution from a formerly acceptable model of "eats and sheets" to a Comprehensive Homeless Resource Center – a campus of centralized highly skilled professionals collaborating to provide the tools necessary to help individuals and families break free of the shackles binding them to homelessness.

Emmanuel House - Emmanuel House CDC is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to helping working-class families save and work their way out of poverty in a responsible & dignified manner. In close collaboration with our partner organizations, qualified families are selected and subsequently given the opportunity to live in one of our apartments – usually for about 18 months. Families pay market rate rent just as they would anywhere else, but by leveraging a variety of created and existing resources, an entire year's rent (usually about $10,000) is channeled into each family’s savings to provide a down-payment on their first home thereby eliminating the primary and often sole barrier—the ability to save a down-payment—to home ownership.

My Father's Hands - My Fathers Hands is a non-profit organization working within the Fox Valley area.  My Father's Hands mentor at-risk workers by teaching them general construction skills using a hands on approach.  The projects we work on include safety repairs on the homes of local senior and disabled community members, as well as, collaborating with other non-profit organizations on larger construction projects.

World Relief - World Relief began offering services in DuPage County in 1979 and then opened an additional office in Aurora in 1999. We are a Christ-centered organization that partners with local churches and works with hundreds of individuals and community groups to offer a comprehensive range of services to refugees and immigrants living in DuPage and Kane Counties.

St. Rita of Cascia Catholic Church - A vibrant multi-cultural parish in Aurora, IL. Built in the 1950’s St. Rita’s has beautiful grounds and buildings that the PVs helped to spruce up.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Saturday Morning in Aurora and a Few More Pictures

Before we all headed out to return to our respective homes and lives, we gathered one final time on Saturday morning to take part in the fundraiser "Hike for Hesed." The event raised money to help support all the wonderful programs that Hesed House is able to provide to the people of the greater Aurora area. The weather was a little chilly for the hike, with temperatures in the low 40's and a wind chill in the 30's, but the spirit of the participants, including the PVs was evident despite the cool temperatures. I've included a couple of pictures from the hike as well as additional pictures from the week that were generously shared with with us. Thanks again for a great week for all those that participated and for those that supported from afar!