Volunteer Evanston Newsletter - Spotlight on Citizens' Greener Evanston

Volunteer Evanston News & Events - May


Stay Connected

Volunteer Evanston is revamping its Twitter, Facebook, and website so that it is easier to find volunteer opportunities regardless of how you choose to stay connected.

Volunteer opportunities will be posted on these sites, as well as reminders about events and logging your hours, community volunteer news updates, and other information about reaching 150,000 hours this year.





9th Annual Evanston Volunteer Recognition Reception 2013

On Wednesday, April 24, the City of Evanston, Evanston Township High School, Evanston Community Foundation and Northwestern University came together for the ninth time to recognize outstanding volunteers throughout the Evanston Community.

This event would not be possible without the outstanding spirit of volunteerism found throughout our community.  These volunteers are an inspiration to all members of our city and symbolize all that Evanston stands for.

Follow in their footsteps during Evanston's community-wide pledge to log 150,000 volunteer hours by the end of 2013.  Help our community reach this milestone!

To learn more and see pictures of the event, visit our Volunteer Evanston Facebook page!


On April 19-21, Unity Weekend was held in Evanston.  Beth Emet The Free Synagogue, St. Nicholas Catholic Church, The Second Baptist Church and the Unitarian Church of Evanston joined together to put faith to work in the community.

The weekend was a great opportunity for people of all ages, abilities and faiths to get involved. Over 530 community members volunteered 1,657 hours of community service and interfaith reflection.

During the day, volunteers completed 49 service projects in Evanston and nearby communities.  In addition to this, hundreds of participants shared interfaith worship services and meals.  It was truly moving to witness different religious communities coming together to appreciate one another better and to foster a spirit of service and understanding.

Many volunteers not only felt the power of service, but also took away close relationships with a diverse set of fellow Evanstonians.  Thank you to all the sponsoring religious institutions and to all the volunteers who made the event a success.


Upcoming Volunteer Opportunities

YEA! Day Festival--May 18

On May 18, Evanston will hold the 26th Annual Young Evanston Artists Day celebration.  This is a great opportunity to witness all of the artistic talent our youth have to offer. 

Volunteers are needed to assist with the following tasks:

  • Silent Auction
  • Set-up/Break down of art panels, performing arts stage, silent auction and concession tables
  • Blow up balloons
  • Sell merchandise at concession stands
  • YEA! Day runner
  • Hawker—Wear placard with announcements
  • Twitter Corps—tweet friends and family
  • Photography

Volunteers are asked to pick any two-hour shift from 7:30 am – 5:00 pm.  Please volunteer to show your support for our Evanston youth.  To sign up, please click here>>>


Women Out Walking

Women Out Walking is a 12-week program that encourages women to increase their daily physical activity and improve their overall lifestyles. Launching its 5th year in March 2013, W.O.W. provides an opportunity for healthy physical activity through walking while supporting women as they develop a post-program healthy-living action plan, improving individual health indicators and nutritional habits, and providing participants with information on women's health issues, including breast and cervical cancer, heart health and diabetes.

Volunteers are needed for May 17-18 or June 14-15.  Visit their Volunteer Evanston page learn more about volunteering!



June Jamboree at House of Blues Chicago--June 2, 2013

The Best Buddies Illinois Associate Board invites you to an exclusive charity concert at House of Blues Chicago featuring Rod Tuffcurls and the Benchpress with opening act, Em & Them. 

All ages welcome.  $20 advance ticket purchase and $25 day of and door ticket purchase!

For more information, click here.


Evanston's Fountain Square Arts Festival-- Volunteers needed July 5-7

Do not miss this year’s fantastic display of creativity and artistic skill at Fountain Square Arts Festival.  On the weekend of July 5-7,  Fountain Square Arts Festival will feature eclectic works of more than 225 juried artists, a popular children’s art tent, fun activities overseen by the Evanston Art Center, food and a soothing jazz music lineup. 

During this annual event, volunteers are needed to assist with:

  • Staffing the main information booth
  • Distributing programs
  • Collecting suggested donations
  • Assisting with hospitality for the participating artists
  • Traffic Control
  • Artist Registration

Volunteers are asked to work for 2-4 hours. All volunteers are welcome.  Your assistance is vital to make this event a success. For more information, please click here>>>

fountain square

Every hour counts!!

As the weather warms up, the volunteering gets going!  Our community members have logged more than 70,000 hours, but we still need your help to reach our goal of 150,000 hours!  Check out our website to pick the opportunity and organization that is right for you.

Let’s take a look at some of the notable volunteering that has recently occurred in the community.

Evanston Public Library volunteers have contributed close to 1,700 hours towards our goal.  

Dawes Elementary School continues to show its spirit of volunteerism with more than 250 logged hours.

Evanston History Center volunteers have stepped up with over 500 hours of service.

We'd also like to recognize all of the outstanding volunteers who gave their time and efforts to the Mayor's Summer Youth Employment Program Job Fair.  These volunteers were instrumental in helping young adults prepare for job interviews. Volunteers filled a variety of roles, from application assistants to hospitality agents. On behalf of the City of Evanston, we'd like to thank each and every one of them for their contribution to this wonderful community program!

If you are inspired by the hard work of your fellow community members, please search for a volunteer opportunity that suits you at www.volunteerevanston.org. 

Together we will "Be the Change"!


Volunteer Spotlight

For the month of May, Volunteer Evanston highlights the dedication of Jennifer Sultz to the community and to Evanston150.

Since March of 2011, Jennifer has poured her energy into ensuring that Evanston150 operates smoothly and successfully.  Her work as event coordinator and now in marketing has gone above and beyond to ensure that the organization excels. Jen jumped into the role and effortlessly continued running with it as production manager for the Evanston150 Community Kick Off Rally in March of 2011. Her ability to plan, delegate, predict, troubleshoot and communicate was inspiring as she created a memorable spectacle that drew a crowd of over 700 community members.

Jen's dedication to the organization has been unparalleled. From that event onward, Jen has been an integral part of the Evanston 150 program. She opened up doors for communication between volunteers and organizations to reach a level of community engagement unseen in Evanston. Jen consistently pushes for improvements, leading her to incorporate her analytical skills to collect and organize data pertaining to new ideas for Evanston150.

Jen, while still deeply involved in the execution of Evanston 150, also now uses her passion as a member of the Selection Committee. Jen has simply been invaluable to the complete operation of Evanston 150 and continues to be the driving force behind its success in the community.

Jen is  talented, kind, cooperative and reliable.  In every way, she exemplifies Volunteer Evanston’s motto of “Be the Change.”

Visit www.volunteerevanston.org to follow Jennifer’s lead. If you know an outstanding volunteer we should spotlight, please email us their information at volunteer@volunteerevanston.org


Agency Spotlight

Citizen's Greener Evanston

Citizens' Greener Evanston

Citizens’ Greener Evanston works to make Evanston a more sustainable community— environmentally, economically and socially—and to address climate change by dramatically reducing our greenhouse gas emissions.  CGE resulted from the Evanston Climate Action Plan, which was presented to the community in 2008.  This plan afforded Evanstonians the opportunity to learn about and join various task forces to achieve sustainability goals.  Community volunteers work with City staff to develop a plan of action to meet the emission reduction goals of the U.S Mayors Climate Protection Agreement.

CGE’s mission is threefold:

  • Promote awareness of, and access to, practical and cost-effective sustainability resources for residents, businesses, institutions and public entities
  • Advocate for practices and policies that support local and regional sustainability goals and ideals
  • Create a unifying sustainability effort that encourages participation from all segments of the Evanston community.


CGE partnered with the City to draft the Evanston Climate Action Plan

  • A blueprint for reducing the community’s greenhouse gas emissions by 13 percent in 2012.

CGE played a lead role in bringing Community Choice Electricity Aggregation with 100 percent renewable energy to Evanston

  • Aggregation led to a 16% reduction in the community’s greenhouse gas emissions, saving Evanstonians an estimated $7 million on their utility bills.

Established the Evanston Climate Action Fund

  • To receive contributions from Evanstonians wishing to compensate for their greenhouse gas emissions.  This fund supports emissions-reduction projects for local nonprofit organizations


If you are passionate about the environment, CGE is looking for volunteers just like you to participate in segments of the Community Agenda. 

You can start by becoming a member of CGE to support the organization’s work, get connected with Evanston’s sustainable community, and to become eligible to serve on one of CGE’s boards and committees.

Each of these working groups needs new members to help facilitate their goals.

Groups include:

25% by 2016 Campaign

  • Implementing strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25% in 2016

Adaptation/Natural Resources

  • Identifying and promoting strategies to help the Evanston community prepare for the projected impacts of climate change

Community Education

  • Providing educational programs that help Evanston community members reduce their environmental impact

Energy Efficiency

  • Working to institutionalize energy efficiency programs in 40% of Evanston’s single-family households

Integrated Transportation

  • Advocating for innovative, integrated transportation plans to reduce carbon emissions associated with transportation in Evanston

Renewable Energy

  • Working to create a community desire for investments in renewable energy sources and to increase solar installations in Evanston by 100% over the next three years


Green Drinks Program

On the second Tuesday of the month, CGE hosts a gathering of community members interested in learning about sustainability issues.

Each event features presentations by a panel of local experts, followed by Q&A and discussion with the audience. This is a great way to network with other environmentally-minded Evanstonians.