FREE EXPUNGEMENT/PARDON INFORMATION SESSION will be held 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Jan.10 at Second Nazareth Baptist Church, 2300 Elmwood Ave. Learn what expungements/pardons are and what offenses may be expunged or pardoned. Individualized provided for questions and/or SLED Report reviews. Bring a copy of your arrest record (SLED Report). To request a copy by mail, send at $25 money order to SLED, P.O. Box 21398, Columbia, SC 29221 or go to http://www.sled.sc.gov to pay online and print the report. The session is sponsored by Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. in partnership with the 5th Judicial Circuit Solicitor’s Office and the S.C. Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services. For more information, email Debra Young at email@example.com
THE AMERICAN RED CROSS is asking people to make the resolution of giving blood regularly in 2015, starting in January, National Blood Donor Month. Donors of all blood types are invited and those who give blood from Thursday through Sunday will receive a Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last. To learn more about donating blood and to schedule an appointment, visit www.redcrossblood.org or call (800) 733-2767.
FLU SHOTS FOR VETERANS are now available from 8 a.m-4 p.m. Monday-Friday at the William Jennings Bryan Dorn VA Medical Center and from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Tuesday-Friday at Dorn’s Mental Health Clinics. These seasonal flu shots are available at no cost to veterans to help keep them healthy. For more information, call (803) 695-6701.
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GRINDING OF THE GREENS through Jan. 8 at various times and locations with varying times and locations. Recycle your Christmas trees. Free mulch from the recycled trees will be available to the public Jan. 10 from 8:30 a.m. until the mulch runs out at Seven Oaks Park, 200 Leisure Lane and the SC State Farmers Market. For a list of location and hours to drop off trees, visit www.keepthemidlandsbeautiful. org.
MLK JR. HONOR THE DREAM food drive is under way through Friday. The food drive held each year is to honor Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy of community service. Some requested items include canned fruit and vegetables, dry foods and canned meats. For more information, call the City of Columbia Parks and Recreation Department at (803) 545-3100.
SHARING GOD’S LOVE, a Christian ministry serving the needy in the Irmo, St. Andrews and Ballentine communities, is seeking donations of sheets and towels (may be used but in good condition), jelly, spaghetti sauce, noodles, laundry detergent, shampoo, deodorant, dish washing liquid, toothpaste, tooth brushes, bar soap and toilet paper. http://sharinggodslove.net.
BETSY’S GARAGE and Cellphones for Soldiers are asking Columbia residents to help troops call home by donating gently used cellphones for recycling. For every donated phone valued at $5, the nonprofit will be able to provide overseas troops 2.5 hours of free talk time on prepaid international calling cards. Betsy’s Garage, 2011 Bull St., will offer a 10 percent discount on any automotive service to customers donating phones. This is an ongoing effort. Donations may be dropped off during business hours, 8 a.m.-6 pm. weekdays and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays. (803) 929-0013; cellphonesforsoldiers.com.
THE SALVATION ARMY OF THE MIDLANDS needs to replenish its food pantry. Items needed include meals in a can (chicken and dumplings, stew, chili, ravioli, spaghetti), rice, pasta, instant mashed potatoes, peanut butter, canned foods with pop-top lids, low-sugar cereals, 100 percent fruit juices, canned fruit packed in juice, canned vegetables (low salt), diapers and toilet paper. Donations will be accepted 10 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays at the Salvation Army Center for Worship & Service, 3024 Farrow Road. (803) 754-7109.
DONATE, DON’T DUMP, an initiative of the Salvation Army of the Midlands, encourages people to drop off clothing, household items, furniture, etc., at the Family Store, 1312 Millwood Ave. Store hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturdays. You can call (803) 748-9964 for items to be picked up.
REACH OUT AND READ, an early literacy program providing books for children ages 5 and younger during well-child visits at Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital, needs new book donations and contributions. Call Callee Boulware, (803) 434-2523.
BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS is looking for volunteers to help with the children in their program, ages 6-13. There will be an orientation session from 6-7 p.m. on Jan. 13 at 4300 North Main St. For more information, visit www.bbbsgc.org.
AMERICAN CANCER SOCIETY seeks volunteer drivers to transport patients to local medical facilities for cancer treatment. The “Road to Recovery Program” is seeking volunteers with a good driving record, valid driver’s license, automobile insurance and a vehicle in good working condition. Rides are needed 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday through Friday and the schedule is flexible to each volunteer’s availability. For more information, contact Fronde Merchant at firstname.lastname@example.org or (843) 744-1922.
VETERANS have served our state and our nation. Now you can help them by volunteering at your local VA medical center or VA outpatient clinic. For more information, call Dorn VA Medical Center Voluntary Services at (803) 695-6780 or visit www.columbiasc.va.gov.
LAWYERS 4 VETS is a pro bono legal clinic for lower-income veterans in South Carolina at the Dorn VA Medical Center, 6439 Garners Ferry Road. Lawyers 4 Vets will connect lower-income veterans living at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty line with local attorneys who can provide one-on-one pro bono legal advice or representation in matters such as obtaining identification (Social Security, S.C. ID, birth certificates); child support and visitation issues in South Carolina; expungements and pardons in South Carolina; consumer protection; health care powers of attorney and simple wills. To be screened for an appointment call (877) 289-6000. Clinics are by appointment only. Attorneys interested in volunteering or anyone interested in supporting the clinic should call (803) 779-1113, ext. 113 or http://scjusticewatch.org.
SUNSET FELINES is in urgent need of people who can spare an hour a week (mornings or late afternoons, weekdays and weekends) to assist with the feeding of several cat colonies in Lexington County. Ideal for retirees or those with flexible schedules. Also need foster homes, both short- and long-term; plus they have plenty of adoptable cats. (803) 794-5686 or email email@example.com.
FIDO DOG RESCUE is looking for volunteer foster families to care for rescued dogs until they find permanent homes. (803) 796-2390.
THE IRMO CHAPIN RECREATION COMM ISSIONis seeking volunteers age 18 and older to become nature interpreters at Saluda Shoals Park. Nature interpreters interact with and educate park guests in the Wetlands Preserve. Volunteers meet at 6-7:30 p.m. Tuesdays for training. No experience necessary; retirees welcome. Jeanette Wells, (803) 213-2051.
DAYBREAK PREGNANCY CENTER is seeking female volunteers in several areas. The center needs volunteer counselors, hot line volunteers, teen volunteers, parenting/childbirth volunteer teachers, post-abortion class leaders, baby boutique volunteers, receptionists and office assistants. The center also needs male mentors and mailing clerical volunteers. Adults only; training will be provided. Daybreak has offices in downtown Columbia and Lexington and needs assistance at both sites. (803) 771-6634.