This is one in a series of three articles about what we are thankful for this Thanksgiving week.
We know people today are busy. Really busy. That's why we know we are blessed to have an army of volunteers, a group who donate their valuable time.
Every day, a volunteer changes the lives of our clients. They have helped in so many ways: served on committees, led a walking group, organized supply closets, landscaped . . . the list goes on! Here is a very small sampling of the kindness we have received this year:
Juliann Gardner, owner of One Small Garden, brought a team of volunteers and donated items to create a garden at our Millvale Early Learning Academy. The teachers have shaped a number of valuable lessons around the garden. For example, the children have learned the importance of sun, water and soil in growing food, and they have learned how to care for a garden.
Starting in March, GE Aviation's Repair Technology Center of Excellence partnered with Cincinnati Union Bethel by volunteering once a month. During the year, the GE volunteers have prepared a garden and painted the basement, a bench and wrought-iron fence at the Anna Louise Inn. They have also laid mulch and painted an office at the Millvale Early Learning Academy.
Our Off the Streets program depends heavily on volunteers, who teach sessions and help change our clients' lives. For example, Lynne Averbeck teaches about budgeting two Mondays a month, showing the women how to read bills, how to calculate interest rates, how to use coupons, how to recognize marketing ploys, etc. She is shaping savvy consumers and in the process, helping the women attain self-sufficiency.
We wouldn't have room to write about all the wonderful tasks our volunteers have accomplished this year. Our programs simply wouldn't be the same without the help of our volunteers. Thank you to everyone for lending a hand!!