Insider: Five things you need to know for June/July

1. Volunteer with Conservancy of Southwest Florida

The Conservancy of Southwest Florida needs summer volunteers at the newly renovated 21-acre Conservancy of Southwest Florida Nature Center located off of Goodlette-Frank Road just south of the Naples Zoo. A minimum commitment of four hours per week is requested. The Conservancy offers free training to volunteers in a variety of positions including guest services, docents/nature interpreters, boat captains, dock masters, nature store sales, wildlife rehabilitation, horticulture, and furniture and more resale store sales. Volunteers must be 16 years of age or older, and at least 18 years old for the boat program. Information:

2. Youth Haven earns re-accreditation

Youth Haven was recently awarded re-accreditation from The Council on Accreditation. COA further endorsed Youth Haven by expediting the nonprofit’s re-accreditation through the Pre-Commission Review Report (PCR) process, as a result of the organization receiving outstanding compliance ratings in all of the fundamental practice standards. As a result, Youth Haven is able to continue to provide children, teens and families in the five-county area, which include Collier, Lee, Charlotte, Hendry and Glades Counties outstanding programs and services. This includes but is not limited to, emergency shelter, children and family counseling, family support services and substance abuse assistance. Youth Haven provides services to more than 2,400 children and family members annually and has been in operation since 1972. Information:

3. Powers new director of student programs

Grace Place for Children and Families recently welcomed Tom Powers as its new director of student programs. In his new duties, Powers will oversee all after-school and summer youth programs at Grace Place, a faith-based nonprofit neighborhood center teaching literacy, language and life skills to children and families at-risk in Golden Gate City. Powers comes to the position from Boston, Mass. where he served as director of school-based initiatives for DotWell, a community health care facilitator. At DotWell, Powers developed and coordinated after-school activities for more than 600 youth between the ages of 4 and 20 at two health care centers and community schools. A 1992 graduate of Dickinson College, Powers has more than 15 years of experience in coordination and administration of youth organizations that served diverse populations in Boston and Washington, DC. “I’ve been working with youth since I was in high school,” he said. “When I first saw the listing for the position, I felt that Grace Place’s mission lined up well with my personal life mission to promote academic success and life-long learning. Grace Place is a very special place and I look forward to working with the staff, volunteers and families as well as strengthening school and community partnerships.” Information:

4. Keep collier Beautiful art winners named

Keep Collier Beautiful recently announced the winners of the 2014 Calendar Art Contest. This is the 17th year that Keep Collier Beautiful has coordinated the annual art contest in partnership with Collier County Solid and Hazardous Waste Management Department Collier County students from first grade through seniors were encouraged to submit original art with the theme of “Florida, Love it or Lose it” or “Recycling.” Of the 1,000 entries received, 14 winners were selected for inclusion in the 2014 Keep Collier Beautiful Calendar. Winners included one student from each grade level as well as two that will be featured on the front cover and back page of the calendar. The front cover winner is Karina Garcia a 11th Grader at Lely High School and the back page winner is a senior from Palmetto Ridge High School Miriam Menegias. The 2014 Keep Collier Beautiful Calendars will be available for purchase on Oct. 1 for $3 each. Proceeds from the calendar sales will help fund the organization’s litter prevention and cleanup projects throughout the year. Information: (239) 580-8319 or email

5. Local restaurants participate in pet food drive

Angelina’s Ristorante and Agave Southwestern Grill and Tequila Bar will be participating in the Dog Days of Summer pet food drive, every Wednesday from June 5 through Aug. 28. Angelina’s Ristorante will donate a percentage of all sales to support Lee County Domestic Animal Services’ Community Pet Pantry. Agave Southwestern Grill and Tequila Bar will donate a percentage of all sales to support The Humane Society Naples. Angelina’s and Agave are encouraging the support of locally owned businesses and partnering with Discount Pets & Supplies in this effort. Discount Pets & Supplies, for the third consecutive year, is matching the donations pound for pound in dog food. Information: or

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