Monday, April 23, 2007

Thanks from the SPCA

I just received the following email from John S. the Chairman of the SPCA

" want to thank you and your volunteers for the excellent job they did on
Saturday at the SPCA. They showed up ready to work and began by filling the
potholes in our driveway. While some were walking dogs (the dogs really loved
the extra attention) others were busy cleaning the perimeter, landscaping, and
anything else that needed attention. As always, they were a great team to work
with and the staff at the shelter thank them from the bottom of our
hearts.Please send our thanks to the crew for a job WELL DONE!!

Kindest Reards,

John Skadowski

Board ChairmanSPCA in Cattaraugus County"

Friday, April 20, 2007

A new job!

Met with the Mayor of Olean today and the Park's office. We will also be painting some street signs and also going to Forness Field.

I am telling you, this is going to be HUGE!! Bring friends. We need many many volunteers!

Service day to benefit locals - Features

Service day to benefit locals - Features:
"'Some measures of success lend themselves to the number, such as the number of people helped, the number of volunteers, the number of service hours, the dollar value of the services provided, but many others do not,' he said. 'For instance, how do you measure long-term impact? How do you measure how much the volunteers impacted the lives of those they helped? Or the fun that the volunteers had? Or the maturity and leadership gained? But, by any measure, the projects have been successful."

Great article Emily!!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

St. Bonaventure University: BonaResponds announces local service day this Saturday

St. Bonaventure University: BonaResponds announces local service day this Saturday:
"We’ve gone to the Gulf. We’ve gone to Buffalo. Now we are coming home,” said Dr. James Mahar, director of BonaResponds. “There will be many student volunteers, but we also want to stress that this is open to all. It is a great opportunity for us to work along side local residents. The volunteers get so much more out of their experience when they can work with community members.”"
Look for thefollowing coming to a newspaper near you! ;) It was the university's press release on the day!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Olean Parks update

The budget was passed and the parks dept had its staff cut by a third. So the need for help is definitely there!

This morning we (James and I) met with a parks official and we have a ton of work to do. We will be working on the pavilion at Gargoyle Park as well as the baseball field at Franchot Park.

Hands On Greater Buffalo

Hands On Greater Buffalo:
"Hands-On Greater Buffalo is an exciting initiative powered by West Seneca AmeriCorps and the Hands-On Network. Our goal is to dramatically improve the Greater Buffalo area through the powerful means of volunteerism. We need a few good hands to help rebuild our communities. Lend Yours!"

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Americorps Position in Bay St Louis

From Jennifer F.:

"Thank you for your interest in working with us to help rebuild homes and communities in the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The West Seneca AmeriCorps Gulf Coast Recovery Team is a direct service AmeriCorps program funded through a Mississippi State Volunteer Commission ( grant and administered by the West Seneca Youth Bureau ( out of West Seneca, NY to assist communities in recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. We are currently looking to place individuals with our partner, St. Rose Outreach and Recovery (

Our members work in the community, physically rebuilding homes and serving as project leaders for groups of volunteers. We are currently recruiting individuals with experience in all aspects of construction including pouring foundations, framing, finish carpentry, masonry, hanging drywall, installing flooring, plumbing, electrical, and roofing. We are looking for hard-working, team players who are willing to both take direction and lead small groups of volunteers.

Positions are available for 2, 4 and 6 month terms. Communal housing and meals are provided by St. Rose Outreach and Recovery. In addition, members receive a bi-weekly stipend, health insurance, are eligible for student loan forbearance, and an educational award at the completion of their term. "

Friday, April 13, 2007

Open Letter to All BonaResponders

>Hi everyone!

I just wanted to give you an update on the BonaResponds Local Service day. As you know it is next Saturday April 21st. We'd love to have you come and help (and bring 10 friends each ;) )!

We have about 15 jobs to do. The jobs range from small to large, from inside to outside, from cooking to cutting trees, making trails to painting dugouts. from easy to hard but he one thing that all the jobs have in common is that they will make the area a better one! I cannot tell you how excited I am to be involved. I think this really will be a very big day for the community and the campus.

As you know, the City of Olean has had some major budget problems of late that have resulted in many service cuts. This will be our opportunity for Bonaventure to Respond to the local needs precipitated by these cuts. We will be working with the Community Schools and also the Parks Department on major jobs.

For the schools, we will be helping to renovate the old Nabisco Warehouse and moving items from the recently closed North Hill Elementary. For the Olean City Parks we will be cleaning Gargoyle Park and helping it to be fixed up after recent flood damage (for instance the pavilion is full of mud and must be cleaned and repainted).

We will also be working with the Olean Hiking group on cleaning the Allegany River Trail and local high schools (Walsh and Allegany) and various campus groups.

The day will progress as follows:


Where and What




9:00-9:30 AM

Murphy AUD



Forms, pens, and Tables

Coffee and donuts (AND TEA ;)

In front hall of Murphy

Ask for donations?? Ask me.

t-shirts? Donations?

James and ? Meghan

Videos and other Marketing



In Aud

Me (jim)

Will give overview and break into groups


Need someone to stay in Murphy and coordinate where everyone is, coordinate as some finish jobs to sent them to next job, sign up those coming late, etc


Community Service time

Various locations (see below)


BBQ and reflection

Outside of UMIN or in Butler if rain

Br Ed and _??___

Food, grills, electric cords, speakers, radios, CD, etc.

See me or James about food


Clean up

Putting tools back, cleaning tools, picking up after BBQ



This is what why we are doing the local service day and this is what people will remember more than anything else. So let’s get lots done and make it fun!! To all leaders and project coordinators, the more fun we make it, the more volunteers will be willing to come back. So please try to make it fun. From music, to showing how much work gets done, to even just saying thanks!

Jobs off Campus



Approx how long and how many



Olean City Parks

Gargoyle will be heart of project—HUGE! Mudding out pavilion where floods have left it a mess! Painting, cleaning up branches etc

If done early, other parks

40 all day?


This is going to be HUGE! Big, high profile, and will set stage for many other things down the road—Good investment!

St Joseph’s Manor area

Clean up between St. Joseph’s manor and Allegany River Trail/Dikes

6-10 (one hour)

Just looks bad

Easy work

_Take garbage bags

Allegany River Trail Clean up

From front of campus to Gargoyle Park


2 hours

End at Gargoyle and work there

Take garbage bags




3/4 of day??


John from SPCA em’d & assured me he will get details by Monday

Archbishop Walsh

Putting gravel in parking lot holes


(half day)

This will also be done by Walsh Parents and students-We will act as leaders.

Painting chapel and a few class rooms


2-6 hours.


This one is a back up. It may not get done, but if weather is really bad, this can be done.

Olean Community Schools (the Old Nabisco warehouse)

gutting (possibly salvaging some for reuse)

sanding/scraping/spackling walls

* moving furniture/computers from North Hill

sorting 20 pallets of text books for donation



Could be both most fun and largest project—likely to be not finished on one day. (transportation issues?)

* what tools needed?

St. John’s Church in Olean



Jennifer Davis

They have been VERY good with both donations and volunteers. We will do this one!

Allegany State Forest trails

Trail building (a continuation of the fall project) Mountain Biking etc.



Long term this is going to be great!

(think Eco-bike tourism)


Clean around River Park and River Road to base of “Merton Heart” trail



Another SBU group will be cleaning Merton Heart Trail (Led by Tom S.)

Jobs on Campus



Approx how long and how many




-door kickplates


-class rooms

10 (all day)


Not the most exciting but will make school nicer more attractive to new students

* Philips head screw drivers

* cleaning supplies

* paint and brushes

Tennis Courts

Putting netting up

10 (an hour or two)


Push for Borko

Will work with maintenance

Parking lots

Picking up sand, painting lines if weather permits

15 (probably all day)


5 brooms, 5 shovels, paint, and a liner (chalk lines)


East of three mile Creek

West of three mile creek (stations of the cross etc)

Clean “station of cross trails”



It will be marked, cut underbrush etc.

* rakes, clippers, few bow saws, etc

Need chain saw

Cut downed trees, pile wood on side of grass

* garbage bags

Athletics Field maintenance

Painting softball dugouts and maintenance building, rugby goal posts, picking up bottles, fixing benches,



Old soccer goals that are in tall grass must be hauled to near dumpster on W side of baseball field

*Softball game until 2ish


“clean up”

Scrape moss

6-8 a couple of hours

Br Ed./Julie Cotton?

Rakes, hoes, garbage bags.

See, doesn't it look fun?!?!?!? :)


I highly recommend all who come wear boots and clothes that they do not mind getting dirty/wet and work gloves!

If any of you have tools (rakes, shovels, clippers etc) that you would like to donate, please email us and we can arrange a pick-up.

Also we would love to have cookies, brownies, water etc donations so if you can not make it but want to help, you can!

We still need more leaders so if you want to help, please email us or get in touch with me or any of the leaders through this account.

Remember, the key however is to come on out and help! Even if for only part of the will be glad you did!



also check out the new videos that are online (

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

From Today's notice board

BonaResponds Local Service Day - Saturday, April 21

BonaResponds announces its Local Service Day on Saturday, April 21, at 9:30 a.m., on the St. Bonaventure University campus. Volunteers will be needed to help out local organizations in spring cleaning and other various tasks. Open to everyone! Students, Staff, Faculty, Alumni, and Community members. A FREE BARBECUE for all volunteers will be held after the work (about 4:30 p.m.)! If you are interested, contact BonaResponds at its email address,, or visit , or simply join us on Saturday, April 21, in the Murphy Auditorium, at St. Bonaventure. Help make a difference to the SBU campus and the Olean/Allegany area!

Some of the jobs we have lined up include working on local parks, cleaning along trails, building new trails, painting at various sites in the area, helping to build class room space, and more. It will be a GREAT day!

Monday, April 09, 2007

Hands On Gulf Coast

Hands On Gulf Coast:
Hands On GulfCoast is "now taking applications for Spring and Summer AmeriCorps positions that begin in May and July...."

I can not think of many better ways to spend summer. Also please check the Americorps program from West Seneca. They are also very active in funding volunteers in the local area as well as in the Gulf. (This is the group that helped us on our trips and with whom we worked for abotu 5 weeks in Buffalo this fall...and as a side note, they will be helping us with our Local Service Day)

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Video of Winter and Spring 2007 trips

Send this to your friends to help get more people to go (and to help with local service day on April 21!!)

It brings back many memories!

Jessica's BonaResponds Video

Jessica made a really cool video about the first year of BonaResponds. Here it is!

Pennies For Peace

Pennies For Peace:
"Pennies for Peace educates American children about the world beyond their experience and shows them that they can make a positive impact on a global scale, one penny at a time.

Our best hope for a peaceful and prosperous world lies in the education of all the world’s children. Through cross-cultural understanding and a solution-oriented approach, Pennies for Peace encourages American children, ultimately our future leaders, to be active participants in the creation of global peace."

Ok, so I am not sure if this would fall under BonaResponds or not, but why not??!! It is from the Central Asia Institute (the Three Cups of Tea people! READ THE BOOK!! It is very very good.