I volunteer now with the Interfaith Food Ministry. Before I started working for Hospice, I volunteered here in the 80s with the Interfaith Food Ministry and continue to do so. I liked it because it is a rubber-hits-the-road organization where you give food to people who need it. I’ve greatly admired that organization over the years because it has never hired a staff member and continues to function entirely with volunteers. That’s a real attraction to me, and the organization now operates out of the old Pick-n-Pack Market on Whiting Street in Grass Valley. So once I retired and shed my life at Hospice, I went right to Interfaith and volunteer for them every Wednesday morning. I work like crazy and I’m exhausted when I go home, but it’s so worthwhile that I continue to enjoy it. After I got there they asked whether I would like to become a board member. I told them I wasn’t interested, that I just wanted to give food away. I work about 20-25 hours a month with them.
The Center for Nonprofit Leadership (CNL) is the organization that I’ve worked with forever and ever. I think I might even have been one of its founders. I spend a lot of time with CNL because of its mission, which I equate with Hospice in terms of its importance to our community. We’re out there trying to help our nonprofit organizations be as good as they can be. The difficulty of CNL’s mission is frustrating sometimes, but it’s worth it. When I was working at Hospice, I put in less time than I do now. Now I’m Vice President of the CNL Board and chair the fund development committee. I probably put in 20-25 hours a month. CNL is a good balance to the Interfaith Food Ministry, in that it takes more brain power.
So when you put it all together, my volunteering involves 40-50 hours a month. This gives me a very balanced life. I’ve seen too many people retire and have no life, but that’s not me. My life is very rich and full. Of course, it’s important for people to remember how to say “no.” I was much better at that when I was younger, so I’m trying to re-educate myself on how to say “no” again. I am absolutely loving the way my retirement life is unfolding, and I don’t want anything to get in the way of that.
8. What is the name of the one organization on the list in which you are most involved and committed?…Were you invited to become involved or did you approach the organization and volunteer your services? Are you paid or unpaid? On average, how many hours a month do you give to this organization?
I would probably say the Interfaith Food Ministry here. CNL is so strong that it could get along just fine without me, but that’s not the case with Interfaith. Some of us are regulars who show up week after week after week, and others show up when they can. The regulars know the entire operation, and we’ve become valuable. If I were to stop, I’d be sorely missed. I think I’d be missed at CNL, but what I do at Interfaith would be missed even more. I approached Interfaith to volunteer. It’s not a paid role, strictly volunteer, and I put in about 20-25 hours a month.Download Article 1K Club