Pillars in Action: Community
Several years ago I joined the Board of Directors at St. Joseph Home eventually becoming the board chair. It was an extremely rewarding opportunity to give back to the St. Joseph Home community with my time and talent. HOWEVER, nothing has been more rewarding than when I finished my term on the Board and transferred that volunteer time to working directly with the residents and staff. Every Tuesday evening I meet at the therapy pool and participate as a volunteer “in the water”. It takes a number of people to assist the residents in transferring from their wheel chairs into the warm water of the therapy pool. We (volunteers) greet them in the water and gently hold them as they relax in the warm waters. The occupational and physical therapists join in and work their magic with their fragile bodies. The evidence shows in the facial expressions and body language of residents as you can see them relax.
In the beginning I was very nervous, afraid that I might hurt their fragile frames. The sensitive staff very quickly made me comfortable and confident in my ability to help the residents. Now (18 months later) my time each week in the water is the most precious time of the week. It is an overwhelming feeling of purpose you get from knowing you are making a difference. A difference not only for the residents but also for the staff who need the help of volunteers. I leave the pool each week and my joy continues as I call my daughters (who live out of town) and share with them the joy I get from that hour or two with the residents and staff. There is no better way to find purpose in the week than to give back to those less fortunate than us. I look forward to seeing and meeting many more individuals that join me in volunteering.
Barbara Scull, long-serving supporter and volunteer of the St. Joseph Home Community