August Volunteer Opportunities

Are you looking for ways to volunteer or ways to support your community? Look no further! SOS Community Services has a number of opportunities this month to fulfill your altruistic inclinations.

SOS Community Services is a community-based nonprofit that is dedicated to preventing and ending family homelessness in Washtenaw County through partnerships with caring individuals, local businesses and organizations, social service agencies and professionals.

Here are a few ways that YOU can directly help:

Ypsilanti Heritage Festival, August 21-23:
Each year, SOS sells handmade ceramic bowls donated by local artists at the Heritage Festival to raise money for our food pantry. They are currently looking for volunteers to help run the booth and assist customers with their purchases.

After School Children’s Programs:
If you are patient, cheerful and enjoy working with children, consider an after school program. Volunteers will help homeless youth by providing basic tutoring and facilitating creative activities on a weekly basis.

Food Pantry:
In partnership with Food Gatherers, SOS offers a weekly produce distribution, and an appointment only choice-style pantry from which families can collect their preferred grocery and personal items up to six times a year. Volunteers will help stock shelves, clean and assist families make healthy decisions during shopping times.

If you are interested in any of the above volunteer opportunities, please contact Katie (734) 484-9900 or email for more information.

"Heat and Eat" policy updates

Attention social service professionals, advocates and individuals interested in getting assistance with the completion of the Home Heating Credit (HHC)!

Recent changes in Michigan’s “Heat and Eat” policy has made applying for the HHC even more important as it may provide a mechanism to restore lost Food Assistance Program (FAP) benefits. From March 1, 2010 to February 7, 2014 all participants in Michigan’s FAP received a $1 payment through the Low-Income Heating Assistance Program (LIHEAP). This payment under the “heat and eat” policy enabled the Department of Human Services to claim additional Federal funding for food assistance each month, providing FAP recipients with an increase in their benefit of $76.73 on average. Michigan has since abandoned the “heat and eat” policy, resulting in a reduction in FAP benefits for approximately 18.2% of program recipients, many of them low-income seniors.

There are three ways to become or continue to be eligible for increased FAP and SNAP benefits; in the past 12 months, meet eligibility for and receive:

• $20.01 or greater in LIHEAP of by applying for/receiving a HHC by September 30, 2015;
• $20.01 or greater in State Emergency Relief (SER) from DHS for utility assistance
• $20.01 or greater in Michigan Energy Assistance Program Funding.

Need to apply for an HHC for your household? Looking to help your residents or clients to apply for a HHC? Please register for Home Heating Credit Refresher: Maximizing Resident Benefits which takes place on Aug 20, 2015 @ 2:00 PM EDT

"Heat and Eat" policy updates"Heat and Eat" policy updates

CodeRED Emergency Telephone Calling System

Boil-water alerts, flooding and other dangers can strike with little or no warning. If you rely on a cell phone only or have recently disconnected your landline telephone, then it’s more important than ever to sign up for the city’s CodeREDTM notification system. This could be the city’s only way to reach you in an emergency situation.

The CodeRED™ Emergency Telephone Calling System is used for mass emergency notifications to notify residents and businesses, within minutes, of an emergency or a potential hazard. The system will call each number and will leave voicemail messages on landlines and cell phones. Register today!

You can select text, cell phone, home phone and even email notification options. When registering, it is important to set up an account so you can manage and update your own contact information. When you set up your account, you can let the city know if you require special assistance in an emergency. This free and vital service is managed by the City of Ann Arbor office of emergency management.

PLEASE NOTE: The City of Ann Arbor's CodeREDTM emergency notification system will only contact residents who live within Ann Arbor city limits. It will not notify outlying areas, such as Ypsilanti, Milan, Dexter, Saline, etc.

Job Seeker Registration Open for MiVirtualCareerFair

Job seekers and Michigan employers can connect with one another through a state-sponsored virtual career fair on Wednesday, August 12th from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pure Michigan Talent Connect's MiVirtualCareerFairs bring together Michigan employers and talent from across the state in an online, virtual environment. You can participate from the comfort of your home, the library and even from your phone! With assistance from the Michigan Works! System 30 Michigan employers will be featured during the event from varying industries. This event will also have the education sector represented for any individuals looking for post-secondary educational opportunities. Participation is free to job seekers! Check out for a list of participating employers.

How to participate:

1.Before the event, create or update your account on the Pure Michigan Talent Connect site, Utilize the Pure Michigan Talent Connect tools and resources to build, post, or upload your resume and gain 24/7 exposure to additional employers seeking talent before, during, and after the event.

2. Register for the event by Wednesday, August 12, 2015. After registering for the event, log in, update your profile, and upload your resume.

3. Attend the virtual career fair on August 12th. On the day of the event, representatives from exhibiting companies will be available virtually from 10:00am to 4:00pm to answer questions and accept job applications. You will have access to all company postings and transcripts of your interactions for 30 days following the event.

University of Michigan Health System Job Fair

The University of Michigan Health System will be hosting a job fair on Thursday, July 9 from 9:00 am to noon at Washtenaw County Michigan Works! They will be seeking both entry level and experienced candidates to fill a variety of openings including environmental services, material services, laundry services, maintenance, patient care tech and more. If you are unable to attend the job fair, you may apply online at

Need to work on your resume before the job fair? Take a look at the resources on the AADL Job Search Toolkit or the resume books available for check-out!

On the Job Talk Support Group

Getting a job isn’t easy and keeping your job can be even more challenging. On the Job Talk is a safe place to vent your frustrations and strategize work-life solutions. Whether you are an intern, new hire, mid-career, manager, executive or nearly retired, this group will provide support from others who share your struggles. The group meets every Tuesday from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm in Conference Room B of the Center for Independent Living. For more information, or for accommodation requests, please visit or e-mail

The Ann Arbor Commission on Disability Issues is Seeking Commissioners

Are You:

● A Disability Advocate
● Physically Challenged
● Developmentally Disabled
Blind or Visually Impaired
● Deaf or Hard of Hearing
● A Person with a Chronic Disease
● A Care Giver

Become a Commissioner!

The purpose of the Ann Arbor Commission on Disability Issues is to promote and advocate for equal opportunities for all individuals with physical, mental and/or emotional disabilities, including full accessibility in Ann Arbor facilities, programs, businesses and organizations. The Commission addresses issues of significance to the local disability community, through effective committee work and collaboration. Commissioners serve a 3-year term requiring an appointment by the Mayor with approval from City Council. Ann Arbor residents are given priority consideration, but non-residents will be considered if they are viewed to fill a gap on the commission.

Meetings are open to the public and can also be viewed on Community Television Network (CTN)-Comcast Cable Channel 16. You can also view CTN videos On Demand by going to Public meetings are held at City Hall on the third Wednesday of every month starting at 3:15pm

If you would like an application to apply for a seat on the Commission contact the Mayor’s Office at 734-794-6161 or visit the Resource Page at If you want more information about being a commissioner e-mail

A3BLN- Promoting Disability and Diversity in the Workplace

This Friday, May 15, join the Ann Arbor Area Business Leadership Network (A3BLN), hosted this month by the Ann Arbor Center for Independent Living and Washtenaw Community College Human Resources, for the unique opportunity to learn from employers & employees about ways to improve work opportunities for people with disabilities.

A panel of employers and employees from NuStep, Select Ride, and the University of Michigan will discuss the benefits of a diversified workforce. Sessions will be lead by human resources, legal and advocacy experts sharing their views regarding hiring persons with disabilities and ADA accommodations in the workplace.

Date: Friday, May 15th
Time: 10:30 a.m.- 1:30 p.m.
Location: WCC Morris Lawrence auditorium, 4800 E. Huron River Drive

This event is open to all business leaders, employers & current or potential employees with disabilities. There is no fee to attend, but registration is required- the first 100 registrants will receive a complimentary lunch!

Project Outreach Drop In: Health and Housing Assistance

Do you need housing assistance or help finding mental health services? Join Project Outreach on Thursdays from 2:00 to 4:00 pm in the 2nd floor study room of the Downtown branch of the Ann Arbor District Library.

The Project Outreach Team (PORT) is an intensive community outreach team that consists of two distinctive integrated teams. Projects for Assistance in Transition from Homelessness (PATH) serves the homeless, mentally ill population in Washtenaw County. The Justice Project Outreach Team (JPORT) serves individuals who are involved with the justice system and need mental health assistance. A key service PORT provides is ongoing psychiatric services, including assessments, consultation, and medication management to individuals who are homeless and those in the justice system who need mental health assistance.

Please call (734) 222-3750 for more information.

Dual Diagnosis- Substance Abuse and Mental Health Concerns

Community Support and Treatment Services (CSTS) offers many opportunities to obtain services and learn more about substance abuse, mental health and issues that occur when you or a loved one find themselves affected by both issues at once (Dual Diagnosis).

Now you can join the Discovery Group on Mondays from 1:30-3:00pm in the 2nd Floor Study Room of the Downtown branch of the Ann Arbor District Library.

This group is free and available to CSTS consumers, their families, friends, and any member of the Washtenaw County community. You don't need to make a commitment to attend weekly; there is no official referral process. You can drop in for help or simply to learn more about substance abuse and how it affects physical, mental and social aspects of lives as well as get support and encouragement. Whether you are precontemplative (resisting change), contemplative (change on the horizon) or just curious, there is something available for you.

Please call (734) 544-3050 or (734) 544-3000 to ask for additional information and other services available.

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