Volunteerism is the Backbone of America

I have worked harder as a volunteer than I ever had in my paying job.

My kids were almost 8 years apart, so by the time the youngest one was 2 years old I was ready to do a few grownup projects. I got asked to join the Junior League. That was in 1996. I became an active member of the Junior League for nearly 10 years.

But boy what a ride it was! I look back on those years and they were some of the very best years of my life.

I have had some of the most fulfilling journeys in my life due to volunteerism. The thing that makes it most valuable are that we are in charge of how much effort we put into a volunteer project. It’s not really like a job, you get out of it what you put into it. And, it only takes a little bit of tenacity to get out of it more than you put into it.

I remember when I was chairing an art therapy program at a local hospital and one day a beautiful 10 year old girl with aids came into my class. Rather than spend her time drawing she wanted us to help dress her up and pretend she was getting married. This precious 10 year old girl, with a life threatening disease wanted us to give her a wedding she would most likely never live to see. I cried all the way home that day for her. But, I also felt a keen gratitude for having had the chance to celebrate with her and give her a moment she could remember. It was her wish with wings. It changed my life and I hope it changed hers!

I’ve had the chance to play “Litterbug Lucy” in a skit for 3rd graders for Clean City in an effort to instill in children the desire not to litter.

I’ve overseen the creation of an art therapy program at a local children’s hospital. I initiated an approval for a grant to create a theater awards program for high school students and then chaired that event for 2 years. In those formative years, I found I had skills I didn’t know I had and the experience of working with these different non profits enriched my life.

There are several volunteer opportunities here in the Cuchara Valley that could use your expertise, hard work, or just smiling face.

Cuchara now has a small library on the Parkway and they need volunteers to serve as ambassadors. It is combined with an information desk and it would be your way to showcase our area to visiting tourists. If you are interested, let me know. The library is open Tuesday-Saturday.

Here’s a list of nonprofits in the Cuchara Valley who could use your expertise and enthusiasm.

The Cuchara Mountain Park Day Lodge needs hosts on weekends.  Contact Kim Lashombe

The Book Nook – Contact Ginny Carlson
The Veterans Hospital – contact Ginny Carlson
The Visitors Center in La Veta – Larissa Morris. 
Cuchara Hermosa Garden Project – Susan Reed

Phone numbers are located in Cuchara Directory.

If you don’t have a Directory, contact Suzanne Pierce with Cuchara Hermosa at pierce2lucky@gmail.com

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