Ways to make an impact range from picking up trash to offering support to neighbors of all ages

Summer is approaching fast, bringing a variety of ways you can make a positive impact in the Hannibal area.

Area organizations like Douglass Community Services, the United Way and the Hannibal Salvation Army are gearing up for a busy summer, and volunteers can provide support to area residents by ensuring comfort with fans, assisting in getting the food they need and helping provide access to other local resources.

Hannibal Salvation Army summer fan program

The Hannibal Salvation Army's summer fan program begins Monday, June 3. The organization is seeking donations of new or gently used fans or monetary donations to help area residents stay cool this summer. Donations will be accepted at the Hannibal Salvation Army Family Store, at 200 Steamboat Bend Shopping Center. The program is available to residents of Lewis, Marion, Monroe, Ralls and Shelby counties. People applying for fans need to bring in a photo ID. A social security card is required if there are children under five years of age in the household. Fans will be prioritized for people over the age of 65 and families with children under the age of five.

To apply for the program or drop off a donation, visit Hannibal Salvation Army Family Services in The Family Store from 1-4 p.m. Monday through Thursday. For more information, call 573-248-8008.

Douglass Community Services

Douglass Community Services provides a variety of services that are in need of volunteer help this summer. The Foster Grandparents Program gives senior citizens over the age of 55 the chance to mentor and care for a child in the area. The Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) program provides a voice and constant support for children who are involved in court cases. The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program gives participants the opportunity to volunteer with local community not-for-profit organizations, giving back in ways like leading a low-impact exercise program on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Volunteers are needed to help with the Summer Meals Program, which provides lunches to area residents at sites throughout town. Douglass Community Services also welcome volunteers to help with the thrift store and the food bank at their offices at 711 Grand Ave. For more information about all of Douglass Community Services' programs and how to make a difference or donation, call 573-221-3892.

1819 Hannibal Stream Team #4705

Hannibal's Stream Team members have worked to keep area streams and waterways free of pollution since 1819. Area residents can assist the efforts, and the Stream Team was instrumental in the recent city-wide Spring Clean-Up event. In 1989, the team became part of the Missouri Stream Team Program through a partnership between the Missouri Department of Conservation, the Department of Natural Resource and the Conservation Federation of Missouri. For more information on how to volunteer, call the Hannibal Board of Public Works at 573-221-8050.

Visit a residential care facility

Hannibal's residential care facilities welcome guests to come visit residents. You can go with a group of friends or as part of an organization like a church youth group or a Scout Troop. No matter where you decide to go, you'll meet people who often enjoy stories or participating in crafts or other activities with you. Local residential care facilities include Willow Care Rehabilitation and Health Care Center at 328 Munger Lane, 573-221-9122; Beth Haven Retirement Community, 2500 Pleasant St., 573-221-6000 and Luther Manor Retirement and Nursing Center, 3170 U.S. 61, 573-221-5533.

Thank a veteran

Memorial Day isn't the only day to show gratitude toward the men and women who made sacrifices for the United States. A simple “thank you” is always welcome, and there are other ways to give back to those who gave of themselves. The 2x4s for Hope program gathers local funds to help build houses for homeless veterans, and you can support the VA Hospital and local American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars posts. For more information, contact the Hannibal Veterans of Foreign Wars at 573-248-0553 or American Legion Post #55 at 573-221-9698.

trevor.mcdonald@courierpost.com