Let's work to create a community to be proud of! There are plenty of opportunities to use your time and talents and contribute to the success of Eden Prairie. Whether you are a parent, empty nester, or simply a friend to the community - we are stronger together. Your contributions are valued and appreciated. Check out the list of opportunities below to see what fits your availability and interests.
- Sharing Inspiration Volunteer Program
- Community Engagement Impact Council
- Early Childhood Advisory Council
- Winter Warm-Up & Friday Fun Day
- School Supplies Drive
- Teach a Class (Adult or Youth)
- The GIVE Gathering
- Diaper Drive
- Weekend Food For Kids
Are you or your organization interested in collaborating with Eden Prairie social service providers and nonprofits to create a stronger community? Join us as we learn from one another, explore gaps in services in Eden Prairie, and leverage resources to develop collective solutions. The group is composed of a cross-section of the community representing residents, local nonprofits, Eden Prairie Schools, government entities, churches, and other individuals who are interested in creating a vibrant and responsive community.
CEIC Vision Statement: A vibrant community where diversity is celebrated and all feel welcomed, respected, connected, and engaged.
CEIC Mission Statement: To work collaboratively to build upon our community strengths, to foster connectedness and access to resources, and to address community needs and gaps in services.
If you would like to participate or learn more about the CEIC, please contact Molly Patil, Director of Adult & Community Engagement Programs at firstname.lastname@example.org.
2021/2022 Meeting Dates were as follows (all meetings are 3:00-4:30 pm):
September 15, 2021 via Zoom
November 10, 2021 via Zoom
January 12, 2022 – format is TBD
March 19, 2022 – format is TBD
May 11, 2022 – format is TBD
July 12, 2022 – format is TBD
What is the Early Childhood Advisory Council? As a group of interested parents, we seek to be informed and to inform decisions that affect Eden Prairie’s Early Childhood Programs. Monthly meetings will focus on topics such as:
- Technology use in Eden Prairie’s Early Childhood classrooms
- Legislative dialogue with one of our state Legislators
- Preschool and ECFE program offerings for the upcoming school year
- District Superintendent conversation about Early Childhood initiatives
Council members may also volunteer to participate on any of our ongoing working committees:
- Community Outreach
Childcare during meetings is provided for children ages 0-5 with one week’s advance RSVP. If you have any questions or are interested in joining the Advisory Council, please contact Sarah Moline at email@example.com.
Winter Warm-Up & Friday Fun Day
Community Education hosts two large family-friendly events each year that are free and open to the public. The Winter Warm-Up event takes place on a Saturday morning early in the year at the Education Center. Friday Fun Day is typically from 5:00–7:00 PM on a Friday in April at our Lower Campus Preschool Center.
Each year, approximately 300-600 people join us for FREE family fun including games, classroom activities, music, dancing, face painting and more! Families have the opportunity to meet our early childhood staff, ask questions, and get help registering for preschool, ECFE or other Community Education programs.
Our Family Resources Program also sponsors a community resource fair at both Winter Warm-Up and Friday Fun Day. Local nonprofits and service organizations are invited to host tables and share information with families about available programs and services. If you are interested in hosting a table at our resource fair, please contact Reta Johnson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 952-975-7030.
Back-to-School Supplies Drive
Every year, students need adequate supplies to be successful in school. The Back-to-School Supply Drive is our opportunity to ensure all students are prepared, even if a family is experiencing financial hardship.
• Supplies provided to match student needs
• Easy process for families – no need to verify income, no forms to fill out
• Backpacks/supplies distributed at the schools
• Tailored program better meets individual school needs
• Increased connections between the schools and community
The 2021 program is a collaborative effort between Grace Church, Wooddale Church, Immanuel Lutheran Church, St. Andrew Lutheran Church, the Foundation for Eden Prairie Schools, the Eden Prairie Community Foundation, PROP, Westwood Community Church, Perazim, the district, multiple community businesses and individual donors, and other churches. We are always happy to welcome additional collaborative partners and hope to expand our reach in future years. This program would not be possible without your support!
WAYS YOU CAN HELP:
- Donate Funds at epcommunityfoundation.org (On donation page, write Eden Prairie School Supply Program in comment box)
- Volunteer with one of our amazing sponsors
- Organize a Supply Drive
Even during a pandemic, we were able to support 588 students in 2020, and we hope to serve even more this year!
A HUGE thank you to the following Eden Prairie Churches who stepped up to "Adopt a School" for the 2021 program:
- Grace Church (Oak Point)
- Wooddale Church (CMS & Eden Lake)
- Immanuel Lutheran Church (Prairie View)
- St. Andrew Lutheran Church (Forest Hills)
- Perazim Church and Westwood Community Church (EHSI)
HOW TO ACCESS THE PROGRAM:
Families in need may access supplies during Back-to-School Open House Nights across the district by simply stopping by the schools their children will be attending for the upcoming school year and asking for the School Supplies Program. If your child is attending EP Online and in need of supplies, contact Reta Johnson at Reta_Johnson@edenpr.org or 952-975-7030. Families entering the district mid-year can speak with their school social workers if they need help with supplies. For more details about accessing supplies and other help, visit the Family Resources Program website.
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Eden Prairie Community Education is always looking for new and exciting courses to offer. Do you have a special skill, talent or new class idea to share with others? Community Education offers life-long learning for all ages, with classes taking place before and after school, during the evenings, and on the weekends.
TEACH AN ADULT ENRICHMENT CLASS
For each upcoming season, we open up an online proposal form for potential adult instructors to complete. This provides an opportunity for those who are passionate about sharing their expertise with others to describe a course we could offer in partnership. The Adult Learning Program staff reviews proposals and makes decisions based on customer requests, enrollment data, and current trends in adult learning.
For more information, view the Teach a Class tab at edenpr.org/adult.
TEACH A YOUTH ENRICHMENT CLASS
If you are interested in teaching a Community Education class for youth, please contact Youth Program Specialist, Sam Jay.
There are many ways to donate to Community Education that enrich the lives of people in Eden Prairie, and donations help us manage our resources in the best way possible, making our funding stretch even further.
We collaborate with organizations like PROP to support our community members in need and create a culture of giving and gratitude. We seek organizations to partner with us by sponsoring events, such as the GIVE Gathering, Winter Warm-Up, and Friday Fun Day. Donations in support of special events or equipment purchase are tremendously important in our efforts to keep costs down while maintaining high quality programming. Occasionally, donations of food are also welcome during certain times of the year, such as Teacher Appreciation Week.
Your donation to Community Education is tax deductible, and you will receive a receipt for your records. If you would like to designate a gift in honor or memory of someone, we will be happy to send a card to the designee(s) of your donation.
If you would like to explore how your gift can make a difference, please contact Molly Patil, Director of Adult & Community Engagement Programs at firstname.lastname@example.org or 952-975-6942.
Let's Gather to Inspire Volunteer Engagement!
Thanks to everyone who participated in the the 2021 GIVE Gathering! Despite smaller than typical numbers, the event was a success!
WHAT: The GIVE Gathering is Eden Prairie's annual volunteer fair. This year, the event also featured tours of the new facilities at Central Middle School.
WHEN: The GIVE Gathering is typically held on a Thursday evening from 6-8 pm. The 2021 event was on Sept. 30. The 2022 GIVE Gathering planning has begun, but a date has yet to be determined.
WHERE: The event has taken place at the City Center and the newly remodeled Central Middle School Cafeteria. We anticipate the event will continue to be held in this new space.
ABOUT THE EVENT: Since 2016, we've been excited to co-host the annual GIVE Gathering Volunteer Fair, which is a collaborative effort put on by the City of Eden Prairie, the Eden Prairie Community Foundation, and Eden Prairie Schools Community Education. This free event is an easy way for community members to explore volunteer opportunities for the entire family with over 20 organizations who serve our Eden Prairie.
We hope you are able to join us in future years, whether you are looking for volunteers to support your organization or are seeking ways to give back!
GIVE Gathering Activities
-Connect with over 20 service and civic organizations and learn about fun volunteer opportunities.
Group Service Projects
-This year we will be collected food for PROP, our local food shelf. Previous years have included various projects that have benefited other non-profits like the Yellow Ribbon Campaign.
-Learn about what other nonprofits are accomplishing in the community and build connections with each other.
Nonprofit and Service Organizations
Here are some of the organizations attended the 2021 event. In previous years, we have had up to 35 organizations represented at the GIVE Gathering.
- Alzheimer’s Association
- Bloomington Eden Prairie Meals on Wheels
- CHOICE, Inc.
- Cornerstone Advocacy Services
- Eden Prairie Community Band
- Eden Prairie Community Education
- Eden Prairie Community Foundation
- Eden Prairie Historical Society
- Eden Prairie Lioness Lions Club
- Eden Prairie TreeHouse
- Feed My Starving Children
- Friends of the Eden Prairie Library
- Helping Paws
- Let’s Go Fishing Eden Prairie
- Metro South Adult Basic Education
- Mission Animal Hospital
- Nine Mile Creek Watershed District
- Riley Purgatory Bluff Creek Watershed District
- Senior Community Services
- Team 2502 Talon Robotics
- The PROP Shop
Information for Organization Seeking Volunteers
Is your nonprofit or civic organization interested in hosting a table at the GIVE Gathering?
The focus of this event is on nonprofits with a charitable mission to improve life in Eden Prairie; it is not suited well for participation by faith communities. Political action groups are not eligible to host a table. Civic organizations or service clubs with paid membership may participate, but only if they have at least one volunteer or engagement opportunity that does not require membership.
To participate, check back on this site. Once a 2022 date has been determined, the table request form will be posted here.
- Tables and chairs will be available at each booth.
- Limited electrical outlets are available. Please note in your application if you need access and plan to bring your own extension cords.
- If bringing food, it must be individually packaged.
- Promotional items and trinkets are encouraged!
- This event is intended solely to promote volunteer opportunities and is not intended for individual business promotion or member recruitment. Please do not take donations or sell items.
PeopleFest! A Community Celebration of Culture
Despite the challenges presented by the pandemic, PeopleFest! 2020 and PeopleFest! 2021 were both a success, with events taking place virtually and in person. Plans are already underway for the 2022 celebration, and we look forward to gathering together once again for our community celebration of culture!
The purpose of PeopleFest! is to bring residents together in celebration and awareness of the many cultures that make Eden Prairie great. Our community-wide celebration is presented in collaboration by the City of Eden Prairie, Eden Prairie Schools Community Education, Eden Prairie Community Foundation, Interfaith Circle, Academy for Young Leaders, Eden Prairie Human Rights and Diversity Commission, Eden Prairie Chinese Association, India Association of MN, Eden Prairie TreeHouse and others. PeopleFest! is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Minnesota State Arts Board, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.
To learn more, contact Molly Patil, Director of Adult & Community Engagement Programs, at email@example.com or 952-975-6942.
For more details, visit edenpr.org/peoplefest.
Diaper Drive October 1 - 31, 2021
Did you know that a third of Minnesota babies and toddlers don’t have enough clean diapers? Parents in our state are facing the tragic choice between purchasing enough food for their family, or keeping their little ones clean and healthy.
Throughout the month of October, Eden Prairie Schools Community Education and the Early Childhood Advisory Council host a diaper drive to collect diapers in partnership with the Diaper Bank of Minnesota/Help Us Grow. This drive is part of a larger metro-wide collection with the goal of 50,000 diapers. All diapers collected through the Eden Prairie drive will be donated to PROP (People Reaching Out to People) for local families in need. The drive kicks off on October 1st and runs through the 31st.
2021 Diaper Drive drop-off sites:
Lower Campus - Little Eagles Early Childhood & Preschool, 8100 School Road, Eden Prairie, MN 55344
- Eden Prairie Community Center, 16700 Valley View Road
- Dell Road New Horizon Academy, 17995 Linwood Court
- Eden Prairie Montessori Learning, 7455 Market Place Drive
- Yellow Brick Road Early Childhood, 12760 Anderson Lakes Parkway
Or, you can donate online by purchasing one of these items and choosing to ship it to Lower Campus.
What is Accepted?
New packages of diapers
Opened packages of diapers (Did your child outgrow a size so you no longer need them?)
New packages of wipes
Did You Know?
5.3 million children in the U.S. aged three or younger live in poor or low-income families.
1 in 3 American families reports experiencing diaper need.
Diapers cannot be obtained with food stamps.
Disposable diapers cost $70 to $80 per month per baby.
No state or federal child safety-net program allocates dollars specifically for the purchase of diapers.
Infants require up to 12 diapers per day, toddlers about 8.
Weekend Food for Kids Program
Weekend Food for Kids is a partnership between Eden Prairie Schools, Every Meal (previously called The Sheridan Story), and a number of generous community sponsors. This program provides free, culturally appropriate shelf-stable food for children who don't have access to the nutrition they need over weekends during the school year.
Eden Prairie Schools partners with Every Meal in two ways:
- School-Specific Programs: Food is provided discreetly to children whose parents opt into the program (typically the food is snuck into backpacks while children are out of the classroom). Any family in need is welcome to participate, and can register by connecting with your school's social worker. These programs exist at all elementary schools.
- Districtwide Pick-up Program: Parents can pick up food from Every Meal for all students and children in our district on Thursday evenings from 4:00-6:00 PM or Friday mornings from 8:00 AM-10:00 AM at the Historic Gym at the Administrative Services Center (8100 School Road). No registration required. View this flyer for more information.
To learn how to contribute funds, become a sponsor, or access this food, contact Reta Johnson, Family Resources Specialist, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 952-975-7030.
PROP, our local food shelf, also offers robust food support for families and a Summer Food for Kids Program to provide healthy food for families throughout the year. Call 952-937-9120 to learn more about PROP's food programs.