People who serve consistently at the Sulzbacher Center are true gifts to our organization. We are fueled by the volunteers that come from our community, and each of our clients are directly impacted by our volunteers. This impact can be felt in a number of ways: through the meals served by volunteers in our kitchen, through the assistance provided in writing a resume, and countless other ways. We could never express enough thanks to each volunteer for the countless hours of service and the heart and commitment they pour into every task. Among our volunteers, who all deserve recognition but none of whom serve for it, is a mother and daughter team, Brooks and Phelps Moore, who keep volunteerism in the family. Some of their thoughts:
Explain what you think makes the Sulzbacher Center special?
Local teachers have told the Children’s Program director what fond memories some of their students have of their time at Sulzbacher. It’s a special place for families to regroup, get organized, and get back on their feet in an environment that feels like a home. It has been incredibly rewarding for our family to volunteer in such a positive environment. Helping with tutoring at Sulzbacher each week, we have had the opportunity to form personal relationships with the children. It is enriching and inspiring to witness the resilience that these children display with the support of the Sulzbacher program, and to play a small part in supporting them through tough times. Since we moved to Jacksonville 18 years ago, our family has thoroughly enjoyed volunteering at Sulzbacher.
Tell us about some of your experiences as volunteers:
We started as birthday party planners and hosts, taking cakes, crafts and goody bags to celebrate kids with birthdays each month. From that, we transitioned to helping organize volunteers to work in the kitchen once a month. Working in the kitchen is a blast! We cut fruits and vegetables, help cook, and serve meals to the Sulzbacher residents. Last year we began tutoring the children once a week during the school year. I think tutoring is probably the most rewarding and fun volunteer activity we have undertaken. We get to know the kids staying at Sulzbacher and help them out with their school work. The kids are truly inspirational, and the Sulzbacher Center provides such a happy place for them at a time in their lives when such a place is so desperately needed.
Our experiences volunteering at Sulzbacher has been both productive and transformative. It renews us and makes us happy.
-Emily Knight-Smith, Volunteer Coordinator at the Sulzbacher Center.
To get involved or nominate a Sulzbacher volunteer for our August Spotlight, please email EmilyKnight-Smith@tscjax.org