“Every time I volunteer is memorable. It’s a privilege for me to volunteer at the Center. I want to make a difference and give back in a way that’s enjoyable for me,” says Pat.
Pat was volunteering at a local school in her community when she discovered how much she enjoyed supporting children who were experiencing behavioral issues. “I could easily connect with them,” says Pat.
This volunteer experience expanded her goals to move toward volunteering directly with children in need. Pat was referred to the Center by the Polinsky Children’s Center and found what she was looking for when learning about the children who are supported by the Center. As Pat waited for her volunteer clearance of working directly with children to be processed by the Center, she found other ways to begin her volunteer experience through helping with last year’s Wacky Wonky Walk & Kids Festival and Holiday FUNDrive.
Pat now volunteers once a week for several hours in a classroom at the Academy, our privately-operated nonpublic school accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Pat provides support to classroom teacher, Ms. DeNike, and works one-on-one with students on their worksheets providing them with positive reinforcement and emotional support.
“I get a lot more out of it than what I give to the kids. I can see in their faces that they appreciate the consistency of me being there week after week. They have suffered a lot of loss and broken promises. I’m a consistent face and person to them. It takes them time to warm-up and become comfortable, but once they do, they let me help them and become open in telling me about their lives. I just love working with children,” says Pat.
Inspired by her positive volunteer experiences, Pat wanted to become involved in fundraising for the Center and learned about the Iris Auxiliary. Pat was astounded by the Iris Auxiliary’s many contributions to the Center over its 35-year history and immediately signed-up to become a member.
“I believe in the Iris Auxiliary. I so enjoy being a part of this group of dedicated and positive women. They are go doers and have a gung ho attitude to help the Center’s children in positive ways,” says Pat.
We are honored for Pat’s impactful contributions to the Center and bringing her daughter to volunteer during her visit to San Diego. THANK YOU Pat for your gifts of time, talent, and treasure!