To the Kalamazoo Community,
It is with heaviness of heart that we post this letter to inform you that after 50 years of service, Volunteer Kalamazoo is closing.
Local volunteer centers like Volunteer Kalamazoo once served as a bridge between community members that wished to volunteer and the nonprofit organizations who required their support; however, the advances in internet usage and technology as well as, social awareness and activism, have greatly reduced the need for this service over the last several years. Volunteer Kalamazoo acknowledges that the current model of volunteerism has shifted toward individuals contacting nonprofits directly via the organization’s websites, social media outlets and other social activities like corporate employee volunteer programs. As a result of these changes, institutional funding for Volunteer Kalamazoo’s model has become increasingly difficult to secure and its mission more difficult for people to embrace with financial support.
In an effort to sustain Volunteer Kalamazoo’s core missions of building, promoting and connecting volunteerism in the Kalamazoo community, the Board of Directors has elected to dissolve the organization and transfer Volunteer Kalamazoo’s assets and organizational responsibilities for programming to Gryphon Place, beginning August 1, 2016.
While Gryphon Place is best known for their services that provide conflict resolution and crisis management to the Kalamazoo community, they do this with the help of many volunteers who go through an extensive recruitment and training process. These volunteers are managed internally and therefore, Gryphon Place is in a unique position, with an existing talent and capacity, to manage (additional) volunteer programming. The Volunteer Kalamazoo Board of Directors is excited about the opportunity for Volunteer Kalamazoo’s mission to thrive and grow under the ownership of Gryphon Place – whose Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer, Maricela Alcala, demonstrated a sincere desire and enthusiasm to pursue this exciting challenge.
Thank you for supporting Volunteer Kalamazoo. Your help has allowed us to provide a broad range of needed services. We look forward to the future of volunteerism in Kalamazoo, and hope you will consider supporting Gryphon Place’s volunteer initiatives and programs.
President, Board of Directors and Executive Committee