Sun City Center Ads And Events
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Seniors in Service offers free TelePals program for area seniors. Imagine living alone and having no one to talk with, no one with whom you can share your thoughts and feelings, no one even to validate your existence. Seniors in Service started a program called TelePals to address these issues by having volunteers call to check in and connect in real time over the phone. “Just having another human being say, ‘Hey, you matter,” can make such a difference for isolated, homebound seniors,” said Robin Ingles, Seniors in Service CEO. “Helping seniors age with dignity, particularly low-income elders, demands urgent attention, and now with COVID-19, it’s even more complex. “It’s easy to underestimate the danger of isolation,” she continued. “Loneliness in seniors eclipses obesity and even smoking in factors contributing to rapid decline”. TelePals was made possible by $20,000 in grants Seniors in Service received from the United Way, Community Foundation of Tampa Bay and Community Foundation of Pinellas. The new program also got a boost when it promoted a match campaign sponsored by Suncoast Credit Union that brought in an additional $12,000 in public donations. “I got a call from a woman in Sun City Center several years ago who told me her greatest fear was she would pass in the night and no one would know to take care of her dog,” recalled Wilma Norton, vice president of community connections for the Community Foundation of Tampa Bay, to illustrate the feelings of those without connection. “Isolation in seniors was already an issue before COVID-19, and the pandemic has compounded it.
“Anything we can do to help combat this issue is incredibly impactful,” she said.
The free program is working. Thus far, about 100 seniors have signed up to receive calls and about 150 volunteers have raised their hands to make calls. Riverview resident Carmen Bennett has been hearing from a woman named Lauren for the past three or four weeks, she said. “I very much appreciate her calling me,” she said. “I just love her. We have very good, two-way conversations.”  Bennett, 79, feels the TelePals program is of great benefit to her. “It helps those of us who live alone to have someone to talk to. I look forward to her call every Tuesday.”  According to the Seniors in Service website, volunteer callers are trained to ask considerate questions, communicate cheerfully about interests, check on the client’s well-being and refer concerns to expert resources. And they often get as much out of it as the people they contact. Ed Datz became a TeleVolunteer five weeks ago and currently has one TeleClient. The retired executive said he volunteered because he wants to spend his time doing things that do some good. “There’s a crisis for seniors in terms of loneliness, alienation and a need to connect,” said Datz, 70. That’s always been true but now more than ever. “I thought, ‘Wow, these people need to be called." The homebound man Datz presently calls is 83 years old. “We just shoot the breeze,” he said. “We talk about his life, his marriage, his kids…things like that. “He’s always so grateful for my call.” Datz said being a TeleVolunteer takes little time and yields big results. “It really does changes lives,” he said. For information on becoming a TeleClient or to sign up as a TeleVolunteer, visit or call Lily Q. at 813-932-5228, ext. 292. A free sex-offender check will be made online by Seniors in Service to protect both parties. Copied from Observer News, written by Lois Kindle

AARP SMART DRIVER CLASSROOM VOLUNTEERS: SEEKING VOLUNTEERS - RESPONSIBILITIES: Actively organize, promote and conduct AARP Smart Driver classrooms. Conduct at least 3 classroom courses annually . Experience teaching, facilitating and public speaking. Training provided for more info go to

ARTREACH TO PREVENT HUMAN TRAFFICKING OF CHILDREN:  ARTREACH is a program for Middle School students (those at highest risk of being trafficked) to learn about all forms of human trafficking; then collaborate to create artistic messages to teach others.  Volunteers are needed to work together with students for five 2-hour sessions, discussing what they learned and how to express it in art, writings, or skits for students to share with their peers.  Art will be displayed at school and in public places.  Call June Wallace 813-419-4053.

CAMP BAYOU: Love the outdoors? Love interacting with kids? Love spreading knowledge and skills to others? Then you might just love volunteering at Camp Bayou! Camp Bayou Outdoor Learning Center is currently seeking additional instructors for our K-12 Nature Programs. Training provided. Volunteers are mainly needed Thursday and Friday, from 10 to noon, throughout the year. Call 813-641-8545 or email for more information. A volunteer form can be downloaded from

C.A.R.E.S. VOLUNTEERS NEEDED ~ C.A.R.E. our local animal rescue in Ruskin is looking for volunteers and donations. C.A.R.E. is a no-kill, volunteer run, animal shelter for neglected, abused and unwanted cats and dogs in Ruskin. Volunteers are always needed at the shelter - the hours are (mornings) 7:00 am - 11:30 am or (afternoons) 11:30 am - 3:30 pm and any combination of hours in-between. Our "animal volunteers" perform a multitude of tasks throughout their day to help with finding all of our animals a forever home. Volunteers are needed seven days per week rain or shine all year long. If you have any availability, please email us at  or call 813-645-2273

DAV TRANSPORTATION Volunteers are needed to assist us with the operation of our van that transports local Veterans to and from the James Haley VA Medical Center.  We need volunteers with basic telephone and computer skills to receive and process requests for rides from Veterans in the Sun City Center/Ruskin area.  The work would be carried out in your home using our telephone but your computer.  Dispatchers complete basic Excel forms and place them in the van for use by our drivers.    For more detailed information, please contact Stu Swayze, Transportation Coordinator, DAV, Chapter 110, Sun City Center. Tel: 813-642-0302. 

ECHO - The Emergency Care Help Organization in Riverview seeks volunteers to improve services to South County families in need of assistance. They are in need of volunteers to assist in providing food, clothing, and other supplies to families that have experienced a sudden life-altering event. If you have 3 or 5 hours, or an entire day or two that you might enjoy helping, please call (813)685-0935

FELINE FOLKS is a 501©3, totally not for profit operating on donations and through the kindness of volunteers.  Currently there is a need for help feeding the community cats.  Contact us at or better yet, stop by the Meow Mixer.

FIREHOUSE CULTURAL CENTER: Have time & talent to spare? Volunteers needed at Firehouse Cultural Center! Donate your time & talent for Events or Office Support. Call the Firehouse Cultural Center and ask for Frances 813-645-7651 

HEARING AIDS TO DONATE: Do you have hearing aids that no longer work? DON'T THROW THEM OUT! Lyle Watson, along with the Sun City Center Men's Club is helping under privileged children and adults receive recycled hearing aids. If you have good batteries and old hearing aids that are working or not, please drrop them off into a Sertoma Florida Speech and Hearing Foundation canister stationed at several locations around Sun City Center. Canisters are blue and white with the picture of a little girl. 
Recepticals are at several locations near you: Sun Towers Retirement Community (mail room), SCC Chamber of Commerce, Southshore United Church of Christ, Boggs Jewelry, SCC Funerral Home, Reedmer Lutheran Church, Aston Gardens, Aston Gardens North, St. Andrews Presbyterian Church, Freedom Plaza, Karen's Style/Roy's Barber, Sun City Center Library, Eye Associates. If you have questions or would like to host a receptical at your place of business, please call Lyle at 813-633-9096. 

MANATEE VIEWING CENTER: The Florida Aquarium, 701 Channelside Drive, Tampa. The Florida Aquarium is recruiting volunteers to assist guests at the Cownose Cove touch pool at the Manatee Viewing Center. These volunteers will receive excellent training about customer service, as well as the natural history of the animals who live in the habitat. We host information sessions about our Cownose Cove Volunteer Program at the main Aquarium. For more information, please contact Rebecca Hughes,, 813-367-4075.

MARY & MARTHA HOUSE: Calling all year-round and seasonal residents. Looking for a place to volunteer your skills and talents?  Come help us out right here in Ruskin at Mary and Martha House. We are especially looking for volunteers with Event Planning experience to help the agency with its fund-raising efforts.   If you have experience with non-profit organizations as a Team Leader, Fund-raiser or Event Planner please consider joining our volunteers.  Mary & Martha House provides emergency and transitional housing and support services to homeless women, victims of domestic violence and their dependent children and serves all of  Hillsborough County. We encourage and help them to realize that their life is not over, it has just begun. The need is great and we cannot do this without the help of the community.  Please consider donating your time to help support our mission. For more information on volunteering call 645-7874 or visit our website at

MARY PETRO FUND provides financial assistance and referral information to many of our low income senior residents in Sun City Center who need assistance with purchasing food and medicine or have other related quality of life needs.  We are located at United Methodist Church and meet in room #12. If you can spare four hours per month we would love to have your help.  We are open every Tuesday and Thursday between 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. and our team of two volunteers meet, greet and assist your neighbors in need.  You can set your own schedule.  Why not visit us and see how we help others?  Please call 813-634-8306 for more information.

NEARLY NEW SHOP IN SUN CITY CENTER: Volunteers are needed at the Nearly New Shop in the Sun City Center Plaza. This time of year with Sno-Birds leaving and vacations more frequent the Nearly New Shop becomes understaffed. Needed are willing workers who can put in 3 hours or more a week helping with the necessary chores and duties that make the Nearly New a successful endeavor. Interested parties can call 813-642-9099 or go to the shop which is in the rear of the Sun City Center Plaza behind the Bon Worth store. The Nearly New Shop is a project of the Sun City Center Interfaith Social Action Council and raises funds through the sale of donated goods. The shop is open for sales from 8AM - Noon on Saturdays during the summer months. Open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday 8AM - 3PM for donations.   

OMBUDSMAN PROGRAM: Reaching Out to Long-Term Care Residents - Florida’s Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program has advocate positions available in the Hillsborough and Manatee areas. Volunteers visit with residents of nursing homes, assisted living facilities and adult-family care homes to ensure they are treated with dignity and respect. Training and certification are provided and volunteers participate in council meetings, administrative assessments and complaint resolution in facilities. If you would like to become an ombudsman and make a difference in your community, visit, search for us on Facebook or call 1-888-831-0404.

OUR LADY'S PANTRY:  Can you help feed our neighbors? By sharing your time? “It requires a considerable effort to run Our Lady's Pantry," says Anita Bullaro, co-director of Our Lady’s Pantry, along with her husband Tom. "We could never do this work without our many helpers. Volunteers come when they can, and leave whenever they wish. No formal commitment is required. If you would like some more information about helping out, just stop in some Tuesday, Friday, or Saturday morning.” You can find us immediately south of Sun City Center Blvd., on U.S. Highway 301, in Wimauma. We are in back of the classroom building on the far right-hand corner of the Mission Center. We welcome donations of unexpired, non-perishable, nutritious food. Kindly bring your donations to the Pantry whenever it is open. "Every little bit helps," says Anita. We purchase most of our food for $.18 a pound at Feeding America, a regional food bank in Tampa Bay. Feeding America, however, supports more than 100 other food pantries in Central Florida. Sometimes there's not enough food to go around. On those occasions, we must purchase food at current market prices, considerably draining our resources. If you can help, kindly send a check to Our Lady’s Pantry — Food, c/o Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Migrant Mission, 16650 U.S. Highway South; Wimauma, Fl. 33598. Thank you for your help. 

SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) Florida Department of Elder Affairs' seeks community heroes!!! Many Floridians find the Medicare system to be daunting and there are millions of individuals who need guidance to understand their options. By volunteering for the Florida Department of Elder Affairs' SHINE (Serving Health Insurance Needs of Elders) Program, you'll gain the ability to change lives for the better by empowering older adults and individuals with disabilities to be confident and in control of their health care choices. In addition to serving members in your community, the invaluable knowledge and experience you gain with SHINE can be beneficial for you, your friends and loved ones. To find out more, please visit or call 813-740-3888 and ask to speak with Kyrie-Leigh Chambliss, the SHINE Liaison. 

SOUTH BAY GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY VOLUNTEERS - The South Bay Genealogical Society is going on summer hiatus and will not meet for its regular meetings until September.  SBGS will still have our volunteers to assist anyone with their genealogy during the summer and for the rest of the year on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 10 am until noon at the SouthShore Regional Library in the Genealogy Center.    

SOUTH BAY HOSPITAL SEEKS VOLUNTEERS: Volunteers Needed at South Bay Hospital - Sun City Center, Florida - South Bay Hospital is seeking volunteers for several highly visible patient experience positions throughout the hospital. If you have the desire to help others, the ability to provide exceptional service and can offer courteous communication skills, this could be the perfect opportunity for you. Volunteers are needed on weekdays and hours are flexible. Customer experience is a plus. Patient experience training, background screening and orientation will be provided. If you are interested in volunteering at South Bay Hospital, please call 813-634-0187. For more information about South Bay Hospital, please call 813-634-0496 or visit 

SOUTH SHORE COALITION FOR MENTAL HEALTH AND AGING: Seeking volunteers to contribute to several initiatives: Memory Screenings, creation of "Wraparound for Seniors" and gathering of data for our annual Community Resource guide. Want to stay behind the scenes and assist? A bit of clerical skill is all we need. Interested? Please call Debbie Caneen 813-892-2990 or email us at

SUN CITY CENTER EMERGENCY SQUAD: Opportunity! Receive the reward of helping your neighbor with as little as 5 hours per week. Need something rewarding to occupy your time? Visit the Sun City Center Emergency Squad today. Learn about the different ways you can contribute! Medical background is not a requirement. Like to cook? Enjoy puttering around the house with projects? Knowledgeable about vehicle maintenance? Want to wash an Emergency Vehicle or greet new faces as a Receptionist? Have computer knowledge that you would like to share? These are all opportunities for you to contribute to “Neighbors Helping Neighbors”.  For more info, call 813-633-1411 today and ask for Robin Watt.

SUN CITY CENTER WOMAN'S CLUB: The Sun City Center Woman's Club, Inc. meets the 3rd Thursday from September thru May at Sun City Center Community Hall, 1009 South Pebble Beach Blvd., Sun City Center.  The social hour starts at 11:00 a.m. with a meeting, catered lunch and program to follow. The Sun City Center Woman's Club, Inc. offers many opportunities for volunteering in our community alongside other caring ladies.  If you live in Sun City Center or Kings Point, please join the Sun City Center Woman's Club, Inc. to have fun and help us do good things for our community and surrounding areas.  Contact Membership Chair Linda Raymond at or call 813-331-3108 for more information.

RUSKIN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL SEEKING VOLUNTEER TUTORS - URGENTLY NEEDED - Ruskin Elementary School needs volunteers who are willing to spend an hour or more each week helping young children develop reading and/or math skills.  Prior teaching experience is not necessary.   If you are interested in volunteering and want more information, contact either: Maureen Long 813-767-5416 - Barbara Silver 301-509-8032 - 

VOLUNTEER MATCH TO BE CONNECTED WITH OPPORTUNITIES: Not sure what to do? Get notifications of opportunities. For email updates with new opportunities to connect near you, visit: and select your areas of interest. It's easy! Have an opening for participants? Post your opening! 

WIMAUMA SENIOR CENTER NEEDS: Bi-lingual English-Creole volunteer. We are looking for volunteer that will come 2x a week to help translate for one of our new clients. For more information and eligibility requirements please email  or apply online at: