Tag Archives: elderly

Community Celebration of Place

Music is such important parts of culture.  From Bach to the Beatles, folk music to rock n’ roll, even from Madonna and Lady Gaga – music can reflect who we are as a culture and capture more than just the words and notes.  Music can bring generations together.  Today’s organization uses music to bring generations together by turning stories into music through their Elder’s Wisdom, Children’s Song program. 

Community Celebration of Place (CCP) is a 501(c)3 non-profit that works to strengthen community spirit and pride by using music and art to honor the dignity, hard work and resiliency of people from  communities across the United States and beyond.  They do this through many different programs including Elders’ Wisdom, Children’s Song (EWCS) and Teaching Tolerance.  CCP is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, but works around Minnesota, the United States, and even around the world with their programs.

CCP was founded in 1999 by Larry Long and a national group of education leaders.  The organization was created in order to formalize the multicultural and multigenerational model of learning and community building that Long, CCP Executive Director, had developed over 20 years of work in communities across the world as a troubadour, activist, and educator.

The EWCS program began in the 1980s in Oklahoma when Long was asked to bring the tradition of Woody Guthrie into the schools of Woody’s home state.  That experience led to a project in Alabama, where Long worked with children and elders in 27 rural Alabama communities.  Long went on to work with other communities in the Dakotas, California, Georgia, Tennessee, Minnesota, Canada, South Africa, Brazil, Russia, and Scotland.  After operating in hundreds of schools, EWCS has now evolved into a transferable process that can be incorporated into the daily curriculum of schools to meet the educational standards required of schools today, while restoring community and building connections with community elders through multigenerational, multicultural learning.  

In the EWCS program, community elders are brought into a school to share their stories.  The children listen, ask questions, and learn about the stories of these elders.  Then the children put together songs that tell those stories.  In the videos on the Community Celebration of Place website, you can see portions of previous programs.  In one program, the elders were a holocaust survivor, a woman raised in the segregated south, a war veteran, and an African storyteller together.  You could tell from the remarks of those involved that the program was a moving experience.  CCP has honored hundreds of elders in recitation and song from across the United States, and worked directly with thousands of young people, hundreds of teachers, and performed before over one hundred thousand community members.  You can learn more about the EWCS program and watch videos of previous performances at the CCP website

Another program CCP offers is Teaching Tolerance.  This recording and songbook is a musical journey through Native American chant, African American poetry, songs of friendship and belonging from immigrant communities across the United States, and classics from our nation’s proud tradition of singing for social change.  This program is being sent for free to over 200,000 elementary schools, community centers, and organizations serving young children.  For more information on this program, please visit the CCP website

Volunteers help make the CCP programs successful.  Some opportunities include:

  • CCP is seeking individuals with archival and organization background to assist with an archive project. 
  • They are in need of individuals to help setup and take down equipment (microphones, speakers, etc) at their EWCS Celebrations.
  • They are also are always looking for individuals who can help with marketing and promotions.
  • CCP also supports the Minneapolis Monarch Festival that occurs each September.  There is a great need for volunteers to assist with setup, take down, manning booths, helping with the arts areas, and more. 

Please contact CCP if you are interested in their volunteer opportunities.  You can also support CCP through a financial donation through the organization’s website

You can learn more about Community Celebration of Place and their programs at their website,

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Posted by on April 12, 2011 in Nonprofit Organization


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Store To Door

Each of us has probably known someone who started having difficulty running their own errands but still could take care of themselves in their own home.  There are well-known services such as Meals on Wheels to help bring meals into their homes, but today’s organization is another option enhance the ability for aging adults to continue to live independently.

Store to Door is a nonprofit grocery and prescription shopping and delivery service for elderly adults in the Twin Cities, Minnesota seven-county metro area.   The organization was founded in 1984 by Dr. David Berger and Judy Madaj.  Dr. Berger had attempted to encourage other agencies to initiate a grocery delivery service for homebound adults who are able to live in their own home and prepare their own meals.  When other organizations did not step up to provide this service, Dave and Judy started Store To Door by enrolling a group of clients.  They did everything themselves – order taking, shopping, delivery, banking and administration.  In that first year, Store To Door shopped for and delivered 1,600 orders.  Since then they have grown and developed better processes.  In 2010, they delivered over 17,000 orders to over 1,300 clients.  In 2003, they started purchasing all your groceries at Cub Foods.  They currently have daily shopping operations out of five metro area Cub Foods stores in St Anthony, Crystal, Bloomington, St Paul–Midway, and Maplewood.  In 2013 they plan to make 20,000 deliveries to 1,700 clients as well as adding a Cub store in Chanhassen to serve Carver County and their first store outside of the Metro in Isanti County at the Cambridge Cub Store.

Store To Door serves the entire seven county metro area, acting as the eyes, ears, arms and legs of adults unable to get out and shop for their own groceries.  On a regular schedule, volunteers phone clients for their grocery order and shop for them at Cub Foods.  Staff members deliver the groceries and prescriptions in refrigerated vans.  Their clients live on their own and pay for their groceries, using personal funds or Food Support benefits.  They serve people of all incomes.  A delivery contribution (determined by age, household size, and self-reported income) is requested of all clients.  Customers can order any product that Cub Foods carries, including postage stamps, magazines, cleaning supplies, toiletries, prescriptions, greeting cards, etc.  Store To Door services are tailored to meet the needs and expectations of our elderly clients.  Orders are placed over the phone (no computer needed), customers can use coupons and food stamps when paying for groceries.  Deliveries are made right into the client’s kitchen and when needed the staff member even helps the client unload and put away the groceries.  Also, since they are talking to customers over the phone, and seeing them in-person during delivery, they are able to provide another social outlet for seniors who may otherwise be quite isolated.

How can you help?

  • Make a donation online at their website or via your company’s United Way campaign.  Monetary donations are used to maintain delivery vehicles, purchase gas, or help with other administrative expenses.
  • Donate your whole, uncut, un-separated manufacturer’s grocery coupon booklets from the Sunday paper.
  • Take a look at the volunteer program blog to learn more about opportunities.
  • Volunteer with Store To Door in a variety of capacities, including roles as office assistants, volunteer order takers, coupon corps members, and volunteer grocery shoppers.  One opportunity is a phone order taker.  These volunteers develop an ongoing relationship with the elderly adults by calling them on a regular schedule to take their grocery order every other week.  A second opportunity is to volunteer as a grocery shopper.  Visit their website to find a full list of opportunities and to signup.

Learn more about Store To Door on their website,  Store To Door was also recently featured in the “Non-Profits To Know” series presented by the Saint Paul Foundation and the Minneapolis Community Foundation – watch the video here.   You can also follow them on Facebook or Twitter.


Posted by on February 3, 2011 in Nonprofit Organization


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