Local organizations see spike in volunteering during the holidays

MARQUETTE — Christmas is a time to give back to your community, namely, the Warming Shelter where the homeless or others in need go for a free meal.

They see a spike in volunteers during the holiday season.

The Warming Shelter located in downtown Marquette is thankful for all the volunteers and donations they get daily.

The reasons they are able to provide meals to people in need are because of volunteers – In fact, 98% of their staff is volunteer based. During the holidays they see an influx of volunteers.

“Throughout the year we stay steady about 250 volunteers at the shelter and during the holiday season that tends to increase. About 50 members do come out during the holiday season,” said Ryan Redmond, Interim Executive Director.

It’s not difficult to find groups of people to help during the holiday season, but come January, it’s harder to find volunteers.

“Throughout Christmas and thanksgiving after those days the need does continue. It is important to keep a steady number of volunteers to continue with the structure we have here,” Redmond added.

They also rely on donations from the community.

“We run off of donations. What the community gives us. What is donated is how we create our menu everyday,” said Redmond.

Ryan has been a volunteer at the warming shelter for years, the experience has helped him realize how big of a need there is in Marquette County.

“In the volunteering you get to really see the nature of the beast. You get to see how dire their situation is, how grateful I am and how blessed I feel for all the opportunities,” Redmond added.

There is a training period for people who are interested in volunteering.

The warming shelter also wants to thanks all the businesses that donate on a daily basis.

For more information on how you can donate or volunteer click HERE.