SERVICE-LEARNING GUIDE FOR STUDENTS

This is for Service-Learners or those who wish to collect community service hours for school:

Thank you for choosing UPG for your Volunteerism and Service-Learning. We guarantee that if you put in the time, you will change the world.

UPG has 5 Locations, 6 Volunteer Opportunities every week (at this time), and we are 99% Volunteer Staff.
We have a lot of different activities, and it is complex.

Be aware that UPG DOES NOT HAVE ADMINISTRATIVE STAFF. Be patient, since nobody is sitting in an office waiting for your contact.
When you send an e-mail, it goes to a Staffer who donates his or her time to the community on a part-time basis.

That means that you must take the time to read the info that we provide, and that you must be patient as we deal with the administrative steps required for your service.

______________________________

Note: This document is written with several institutions in mind, but we welcome Volunteers from any school or college. Your school’s procedures may be different.

CONTENTS:
GUIDELINES FOR EVERY VOLUNTEER
TIPS FOR VOLUNTEERING
INTERNSHIPS & Other Opportunities!
FOR GROUPS, FACULTY + DEPARTMENTS + SCHOOLS

OFFICIAL REGISTRATION PROCEDURES BY SCHOOL
> MDC PROCEDURES
> BARRY University PROCEDURES
> FIU PROCEDURES
> OTHER SCHOOLS / GENERIC PROCEDURES

FAQs – Frequently Asked Questions
______________________________

GUIDELINES FOR EVERY VOLUNTEER / Service-Learner

Step-By-Step GUIDE
1. Contract / Registration: Your school may require a contract or registration process before you start (UPG does not). See OFFICIAL REGISTRATION PROCEDURES BY SCHOOL near the bottom of this page.
2. Make your RESERVATIONS/RSVP (see just below).
3. Come out and Volunteer!
4. Get your school’s log sheet signed every day you Volunteer (use the UPG Log Sheet at the bottom of this page if you don’t have one).
5. If you have an evaluation sheet, we’ll complete it when you are done.

========
RESERVATIONS/RSVP:

UPG launched a new Reservation system & Calendar in 2015.
It is still evolving.

1. Find UPG Volunteer Opportunities that are right for you:
Visit the UPG Calendar: http://urbanparadiseguild.org/calendar/.
Click on the events you think might work for you, read the details.
2. When you find an Opportunity you like, download the UPG Map (you will need it to find most UPG Locations).
3. Some UPG Partners require that you sign their Release. If so, it will be next to the map; download and print it if you can, and bring it with you.
4. If you are bringing children, tell us the number and ages in comments.
5. Click the Make a reservation button at the bottom of the page.
6. UPG may send you event cancellations, updates, staff contacts, maps, weather alerts and other info at any time up to an hour before the activity. Watch your e-mail.

========
Service Paperwork:

REMEMBER: you are responsible for maintaining your service records, and must bring your paperwork with you EVERY DAY.
If you don’t have your official paperwork, you can find the UPG Logsheet at the bottom of this page. You will then provide that next time you are doing service with UPG, and we will update your official paperwork.
========
Signing In:
Please arrive on time. We often work in non-public areas that are either locked or hard to find, and we don’t man a gate.
You must sign in when you arrive with the designated UPG Staffer. If you can not find him or her near the entrance, ask any UPG Staffer or a Volunteer.
If this is your first time, be sure to give UPG your UPG Release and any other paperwork we are supposed to have.
Request your assignment to a UPG Team.
========
Signing Out:
Please complete your service when the group does. When we are locked in a long way from the gate, it best to let the group out together.
1. Check for personal gear: water bottle, backpack, purse, etc.
2. Collect all your tools, gloves, and materials, and return them to the place where they are stored (the truck or storage container).
3. Fill out your official time sheet, and bring it to the UPG Staffer who is managing the activity.
========
Working / Training / Leadership
You will be assigned to a UPG Team Leader. Your Team Leader’s job is to make you a safe and effective worker. He or she may be your age, or even younger, but you must follow their directions anyway.

Please pay close attention during training, because your safety and that of your co-workers is important. You will be working around living plants, and the quality of your work will determine the plants life or death. Details matter, so be sure you understand the technical training you get (such as how to plant, use tools, remove exotics, and identify plants).

Keep your tools, gloves with you at all times, or in a designated “tool spot”. That way, we don’t loose tools, which are very expensive.
If you break or damage a tool (try not to, of course), report it immediately to your Team Leader. We must know that it needs to be evaluated for safety, repaired or replaced under warranty or put on a donation wish list.

Expect to get dirty. Expect to break a sweat. Expect to go places you have never been, and learn new things.
______________________________

TIPS FOR VOLUNTEERING
========
How to prepare:
Depending on the UPG Location, we also have Nursery projects, Garden Building and Fruit Tree Planting.
You will be working outside, and will get sweaty and dirty.
• Dress for the weather and grubby work.
• Wear closed-toed shoes (or boots) to protect your feet.
• If you have preferred sunblock, bug spray, or gloves, bring it (or use ours). A sun hat is a good idea.
• Use the bathroom before you arrive, since there usually isn’t one nearby.
• Always bring a water bottle. We’ll provide refills.
• Bring your Evaluation Form / Log Sheet every time, so UPG can sign off on your hours.

========
Making your Service easy for YOU:
Here are some suggestions to make your life easy…

Collect all the stuff you need for UPG together into a backpack or book bag:
* School S-L Paperwork + pen
* Water Bottle
* Personal Gloves & Tools (if any)
* Work Clothing (if you want to change into it)
* Closed toed shoes or boots
* Plastic bag for dirty clothes
* Plastic bag for backpack (in case it rains)
* Camera (to capture the experiences)
* Notebook (to write about your Service-Learning experience)
* Other stuff you will need every time.
* UPG Shirt (if you are a Team Leader or Intern)

This way, you don’t have to remember everything… just the UPG bag.
______________________________

INTERNSHIPS & Other Opportunities!
We hope that you will find UPG a rewarding experience! To learn about how you can build your career while you are still in school, please visit: http://www.urban-paradise.org/Volunteering This describes Staff positions (Team Leader & Intern).
While others only study, you will be doing. These are paths to gain experience and resumes that set you above other candidates for colleges, grad schools, scholarships and jobs.
______________________________

FOR GROUPS, FACULTY + DEPARTMENTS + SCHOOLS

UPG has Award-Winning Service-Learning! How can we serve you and your students?
We welcome contacts from Faculty and Departments, or from Schools, Colleges & Universities.
========
Group:
We can accommodate groups of varying sizes. Check the UPG Calendar, and then get in touch with [email protected] to inquire about your group. Every UPG Location has varying capacities, so scheduling in advance is required.
Due to the difficulty of scheduling many people at once for one specific date, you may find that it is easier to offer your group the whole UPG Calendar, or specific UPG Locations. See below.
========
Faculty:
Note that UPG is NOT just for Science Majors!
We may be able to structure a specific set of experiences to help your students gain insights into your course.

Departments:
We may be able to structure a set of experiential tracks to align with a series of courses.
This allows a student to leverage experiences gained in a prior semester to gain deeper understanding in the current one.
UPG also offers Internships for students from many Majors, from Graphic Design and Web Development to Sculpture, Cartography, Health, Bio, Botany, Marine Science and many more. Ask!

Schools, Colleges & Universities:
UPG offers your students unique opportunities. They can learn about the real world we live in by working within it. They will learn that they have the ability – and the responsibility – to shape the world that they want to live in. They will “Be the Change”.

Please get in touch to set up a relationship which will help your students reach new heights.
Please be understanding that UPG does not (at this time) have a paid staff to administer complex bureaucratic procedures. We will need you to help us overcome any obstacles.
Together, we are building Urban Paradise!

______________________________

OFFICIAL REGISTRATION PROCEDURES BY SCHOOL

MDC PROCEDURES:
Service-Learning for MDC Classes, Faculty & Students

Please take the time to take the following steps. This will make the process of registration as simple, fast and EASY as possible.
1. Create your MDC S-L Contract:
Visit the MDC iCED website. Select Urban Paradise Guild from the menu. Print your forms (PDF is best)
2. Get your S-L Contract Signed:
I am not at every Volunteer Opportunity, so it may take a long time to sign in person.
E-mail a PDF file to me at [email protected], and I will sign it digitally and send it back to you to print.
Remember to specify the number of hours you are committing to serve.
3. See GENERAL GUIDELINES below for Reservations + How to Prepare.

REMEMBER: you are responsible for maintaining your service records, and must bring your paperwork with you EVERY DAY and get it signed EVERY DAY.
______________________________

BARRY University PROCEDURES:
Service-Learning for Barry Classes, Faculty & Students

Please take the time to take the following steps. This will make the process of registration as simple, fast and EASY as possible.
1. Sign up for service with UPG on the Barry Website: http://www.barry.edu/service/
If you have questions regarding the Barry Website or Barry’s procedures, please contact the Porges Center in person or by calling 305-899-3696.
2. See GENERAL GUIDELINES below for Reservations + How to Prepare.

REMEMBER: you are responsible for maintaining your service records, and must bring your paperwork with you EVERY DAY and get it signed EVERY DAY.

Please see GENERAL GUIDELINES below for how to prepare and what to expect.
______________________________

FIU PROCEDURES
1. Register with OrgSyn
2. When you send your first RSVP, request a UPG Logsheet. Print it.
3. Bring your UPG Logsheet with you every day, and have your UPG Supervisor sign it every day.
4. When you complete your service, send a scan of your UPG Logsheet to [email protected].

______________________________

OTHER SCHOOLS / GENERIC PROCEDURES

If your school is not listed here, please do the following:

1. Check our Schedule. Visit the UPG Calendar: http://urbanparadiseguild.org/calendar/. Do we have a Volunteer Opportunity that works for you?
2. Ask your professor or Service-Learning counselor if UPG is approved for service. Be prepared to describe where and when and what you expect to be doing.
3. Ask if UPG needs to be contacted to become approved. If so, ask them to contact us.
4. If you need to create a service agreement with UPG and get it signed, create it.
You can bring this out on your first day of Service, and I will sign it in person, – or –
E-mail a PDF file to me at [email protected], and I will sign it digitally and send it back to you to print.
Specify the number of hours you are committing to serve.
5. Generate the school’s official paperwork for recording your service hours, – or –
UPG can provide you with a paper record of your service.
6. See GENERAL GUIDELINES below for Reservations + How to Prepare.

REMEMBER: you are responsible for maintaining your service records, and must bring your paperwork with you EVERY DAY and get it signed EVERY DAY.
______________________________

______________________________

========
FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions…
Q: Why are Reservations required?
A: We work in huge parks and in non-public areas, so you will need the map to find us. Work-sites can change from one week to the next. We will provide a cell number in case you have problems finding us, but this can change. We need to know how many Volunteers are coming so we can plan effective projects, and know how many tools, how much water, etc.
Q: Do I need to make a Reservation every time?
A: Yes. Please see above for why.
Q: Can I bring a friend or family member?
A: Usually, Yes!
Q: Can children Volunteer with UPG?
A: Usually, Yes! We have kids tools. Just tell us the ages and how many so we can plan a useful project.
========