Our next spotlight for Volunteer Appreciation Month is Keely. While Keely has been involved with Waypoint in several different capacities over the years, her favorite has been volunteering for Waypoint Wonderland. Below, Keely shares why she supports Waypoint and what being involved with Waypoint Wonderland means to her and the community:
"It’s easy to get involved with Waypoint as there are so many avenues in which an individual can volunteer or donate. I have volunteered for many years in various ways (including programs that date back to the previous YWCA). Waypoint and the women, children, and families served there are close to my heart. I know the tremendous work being done by the organization is creating a lasting impact in their lives. Whether through the domestic violence program, the shelter, or the child care and outreach programs, I know my support is truly making a difference.
I am fortunate that my employer promotes community involvement and supports the programs of great organizations like Waypoint. As such, I regularly receive emails from my employer promoting local opportunities, and this is how I connected Waypoint Wonderland. I had never heard of the event, but it sounded like a fantastic opportunity to serve others in the community.
For the past two years, I have been privileged to assist with Waypoint Wonderland, organizing toys and gifts several days prior to the main event, and then serving as a personal shopper for the parents on the day itself (my favorite part!). It was simple to sign up, well-organized, and the staff at Waypoint were easy to work with, caring, and gave direction and support throughout the entire event.
When working directly with the individuals impacted, you can see from the look on their faces (and often from their spoken words) the joy and appreciation the parents feel to be able to provide, in some cases, the only presents their children will receive that year. You can see it isn’t just about the toys and gifts, though. The gifts are the means in which to lift the spirits of those who may be struggling and let them know they are loved and cared for by this community. It was simple to sign up, well-organized, and the staff at Waypoint were easy to work with, caring, and gave direction and support throughout the entire event.
Waypoint is such a valuable resource to this community in so many ways, and I am grateful to be able to participate and call myself a volunteer for this organization."
If you’re interested in connecting to a rewarding volunteer experience like Brad, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 319.731.6118 for more information. Thank you for inspiring people to move forward, Keely!