Kristina Brown

Kristina Brown

Are you looking for useful ways to volunteer? Do you want to invest in your community, but are unsure where your donations will do the most good? Would you like to know more about the services non-profit organizations in your community provide? Read on to discover how you can make a difference in Rutherford County.

February Focus: Special Kids

(615) 893-4892     |  

Special Kids is a Christian therapy and nursing center for children with special needs. The Murfreesboro-based ministry started in 1998, and has grown to serve over 4,500 children from 19 counties across Middle Tennessee. 

Special Kids offers physical, occupational, speech, feeding, and group therapy as well as nursing services.  For information, including parent resources, go to 

The 9th Annual Special Kids Race is scheduled for March 7 at Murfreesboro Medical Center. The race is an annual fundraiser for the local nonprofit. Registration is open for the 5K, 10K, 15K, and One-Mile “Fun Run”. All levels of participants can take part regardless of age or physical experience. 

To register for the 2020 Special Kids Race, go to

All event expenses have been covered by sponsors, allowing 100 percent of the money contributed by participants to directly benefit children at Special Kids.

Volunteers Needed: Fifty adults are needed to help on race day by being “course guides”.  Guides will help direct the route and keep traffic off the road. Volunteers will be needed from 5:30-9:30 a.m. Email for volunteer details.


ALIVE HOSPICE  |  |  (615) 327-1085

Alive Hospice’s annual benefit concert series, Bluebird in the Boro, returns Feb. 26-27, 6-9:30 p.m. Songwriters perform their hit songs in the round at The Grove at Williamson Place to fund care for hospice patients, grief support for children and adults, and free community education on end-of-life issues. 

On Feb. 26, Doug Johnson, Elvie Shane, Adam Wood, and JT Harding are scheduled to perform. On Feb. 27, Tim James, Dan Couch, Ray Stephenson, and Rivers Rutherford are scheduled to perform. 

Each show includes dinner and an open bar. Attendees can bid on paintings created for the event by artist and Grammy Award-winning songwriter Ray Stephenson. Purchase tickets at 


HABIT (Human-Animal Bond in Tennessee)   |  |  (615) 626-0313

HABIT is a nonprofit, group of volunteers working together to promote the bond between people and animals. As a program of the University of Tennessee College Of Veterinary Medicine, HABIT sponsors animal-assisted therapy programs such as nursing and retirement homes, assisted living centers, hospitals, physical rehabilitation centers and schools.

The next new volunteer information meeting is Feb. 29 at 2 p.m. at the UT College of Social Work Nashville Campus (193 Polk Ave, Suite E, Nashville).  For information, email 


HABITAT FOR HUMANITY  |   |  (615) 890-5877  | 850 Mercury Blvd.

The Habitat for Humanity ReStore sales help to cover administrative costs so that all donations to RCHFH can be used to build houses for low-income families. The sale is Saturday, Feb. 29 with 30 percent off donated items


MINDFUL CARE ADULT DAY SERVICES  | (615) 542-4371    |  

Mindful Care Adult Day Services provides activities five days a week for persons who have early to mid-stage Alzheimer’s and other memory impairments, giving their family caregivers a much-needed break. The program operates in New Vision Baptist Church. Go to or call (615) 542-4371 for information. 

The Mindful Care Spring Bash Benefit will be held Thursday, April 16, at Hop Springs, located at 6790 John Bragg Highway in Murfreesboro. The fundraiser will feature guitarist Jack Pearson, who played with the Allman Brothers Band from 1997 to 1999. Kicking off the evening will be acoustic guitarist John Salaway. Admission will be a $25 donation per person. 


Mid-Cumberland Human Resource Agency (MCHRA)  |  (615) 850-3918

Long-Term Care Ombudsman program advocates for the rights of thousands of residents in nursing homes, assisted-living facilities, and homes for the aged in Rutherford County. Trained, certified ombudsman volunteers pay regular visits to these facilities where they spend time with residents, monitor conditions, investigate complaints and protect residents’ rights. 

Volunteers Needed: The Long Term Care Ombudsman Program is recruiting volunteers. Volunteer applicants must pass a background check and attend a 16-hour training session. The next training session will be March 11-12 in Nashville. Contact Cindy Rudolph by Monday, Feb. 24 at or (615) 850-3918.


READ TO SUCCEED  |  |  (615) 738-READ

One Book is an initiative to promote reading and Unity. This year’s book, “It’s All Relative” by A. J. Jacobs, can be found throughout Rutherford County at “Book Crossing” locations. This book is free to borrow. Go to One Book Rutherford’s Facebook page for a list of “Book Crossing” locations and to begin discussing this year’s book.

Unplug & Read month is happening the entire month of February. This is a community-wide initiative encouraging adults, families, and children to unplug from televisions, computers and video games and enjoy reading. For information go to

Cheer on the Nashville Predators and support Read To Succeed when you purchase tickets to the Feb. 18, Feb. 25 or Feb. 27 home games at and promo code: SUCCEED!

Volunteers Needed: Read To Succeed has an immediate need for several volunteers to tutor adult learners, along with a need for a volunteer to teach weekly ESL (English Second Language) class in Smyrna. The next teacher training is scheduled for Feb. 18 and Feb. 25 from 5:30-8 p.m. at the 415 N. Maple St. offices. Call (615) 738-7323 or email for information. 


SALVATION ARMY  |   (615) 895-7071   |  1137 W. Main Street 

Food Pantry Donations Needed: The Salvation Army of Rutherford and Cannon Counties is in critical need of supplies and food to support its 50-bed shelter and daily community meal, serving an average of 100 people each night. Consider hosting a donation drive at churches, school or other organizations.

Bring any of the following to the kitchen, located at 1137 W. Main St.: cereal, green beans, corn, coffee, tea, sugar, macaroni/spaghetti noodles, spaghetti sauce or canned meat. Also needed: liquid laundry detergent, paper towels, toilet paper, napkins, paper lunch bags, plastic sandwich bags and foil. Online donations accepted at For information, contact John Mitchell at or call (615) 895-7071.

Kristina Brown can be contacted at

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