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60 More Great Project Ideas for Your Union Community Service Committee!

Here’s 30 fun and easy union-based community service project ideas that will help your local lodge show real hometown pride!

 

Helena Thornton and Craig Vanderhoof at Harry L. Jones Golf Course. Helen, Craig and the members of Local 1725 are supporters of the Renaissance West Community Initiative. The non-profit seeks to help break the cycle of intergenerational poverty in the Charlotte area.

 

 

Neighborhood Solidarity!

  • Organize a blood drive
  • Participate in MLK, Memorial Day, Mardi Gras, and Labor Day Marches while wearing matching union t-shirts
  • Organize a community blood drive and awareness campaigns for hearing loss
  • Ask for charitable donations instead of birthday gifts
  • Sponsor a Youth Sports Team
  • Connect with community volunteer groups
  • Collect toys, unused makeup and toiletries, and other items for women’s shelters
  • Organize and brand a voter registration drive
  • Adopt a block, street or highway
  • Organize a park or roadside cleanups
  • Test the water quality of area lakes and rivers and issue advisories 
  • Hold regular car-waving parties with banners to raise awareness of community events
  • If your local has access to greenspace, plant a memorial tree and erect a small plaque to commemorate activists or special events
  • Ensure that veterans and retirees are aware of all the special programs, benefits and volunteer opportunities that are available to them through the Machinists and Aerospace Union

 

 

 IAM 141 Director of Community Service Cristina Odoardi with a happy recipient of Boston’s Local 1726 Toy Drive. 

 

 

School Pride and Families!

  • Help organize an online peer-to-peer conflict resolution group among students
  • Help organize and promote an online “Homework Help” student group
  • Have union members create charity blankets, quilts, or crochet items to raise awareness and money for causes
  • Collect and distribute bikes and safety gear
  • Collect baby clothes for new parents
  • Sponsor or teach an after school program
  • Participate in (or coach) a youth sports team
  • Organize or host second-language teaching and support groups
  • Organize an online teen crisis network
  • Organize a pro-labor reading, storytime and playtime hour at a public library
  • Hold themed  “Mom’s Night Out” and “Date Night” babysitting events
  • Start a free community library at your local lodge
  • Launch an awareness drive to promote Machinists and Aerospace Union scholarship programs and essay contests
  • Sponsor or participate in a charity gift-tree during the holidays
  • Plant native flowers and fauna 
  • Sponsor animal adoptions with area shelters
  • Raise awareness with balloon releases and charity walks

 

Beloved Philly union activist Obie O’Brien (center, with plaque) is honored by the New Jersey State Council of Machinists, Obie is joined by District President Mike Klemm (to left) and Local President Rich Howell (to right).

 

 

Retirees and Seniors

  • Host a weekly Bingo Night at your local lodge
  • Create a mentorship program for new activists 
  • Create computer and social media classes for seniors
  • Make birthday cards for nursing home residents
  • Ask retirees to help identify and document unknown union members in photo collections
  • Sponsor, donate and decorate a Christmas tree at an area nursing home
  • Ask retirees to help record and document important events in your local lodge’s history 
  • Ask retirees to volunteer on a regular basis at your local lodge

 

IAM District Safety Director for UA Bill Salo (far left) and District Safety Chair Erik Stenberg present world-champion race car driver Andy Pilgrim with a commemorative safety shirt in recognition of Pilgrim’s groundbreaking work to prevent distracted driving.

 

 

Community Safety!

  • Help organize CPR trainings at your local lodge
  • Sponsor a mural to graffiti-proof a wall
  • Organize a self-defense class or lesson with area police department
  • Organize a “Nosy Neighbor” program 
  • Organize a “Crime Alert” text blast program using crime reporting apps
  • Start or sponsor a neighborhood cleanup
  • Create or promote a hotline in at-risk communities
  • Help create a “Home Alone” safety program for kids and teens
  • Organize kidnapping or burglary preparation drills with police and community groups
  • Create or volunteer as crossing guards at school events

 

Union Yes! — Machinists and Aerospace Union Members supporting Union actions and events at MN State Fairgrounds – Kidway.

 

 

(MORE) Community Organizing!

  • Offer to pay newspaper reporters for classes and instruction on how to draft media releases and attract positive media coverage
  • Hold organized, mass call-ins from union members to city services to eradicate potholes, repaint school crossings, and repair non-working street lights
  • Purchase and install a piece of playground equipment on behalf of your local
  • Commission artist paintings on benches
  • Organize or support a “Meet the Neighbors” night
  • Write and publish a community newsletter under your union name
  • Help connect union members that have been struck by natural disasters to IAM Disaster Relief funds
  • Attend and support other union activities, such as teacher, police and firefighter unions
  • Create union T-Shirts and Banners 
  • Have representatives from your local lodge serve on city advisory panels, community boards, and municipal planning committees
  • Write and hand-deliver letters to public officials, company managers and other decision-makers that have been signed by community activists, faith institutions and other unions
  • Rent billboard space to advocate for important causes