​Volunteers can do amazing things

But really, volunteers CAN do some pretty incredible things. In the last week we have had some special projects that got me thinking about the impact and power that volunteers have.

Last Monday we had a free haircut event for Veterans at our Bill Daniels Veteran Services Center on Santa Fe Drive. One volunteer dreamed up this event and started calling on all of her friends and connections to make it happen.

In the end four hairstylist devoted their entire day cutting hair for Veterans, dentists conducted free dental screens, a masseuse helped guests relax, Rock Bottom Brewery catered lunch for everyone, and one compassionate volunteer rolled up her sleeves and washed guest's feet and gave them pedicures while they waited for their haircut. One volunteer was able to help motivate over 50 others to use whatever talents and resources they had to make sure Veterans in need received the honor and respect they deserve.

Down on the other side of Santa Fe Drive, at the Riverwalk Residential community Littleton, a group of mostly retired women have been working on a clothing drive for homeless, Veterans, and families in need. Back in January they collected over 160 winter coats for Veterans and today they donated 114 bags of men's, women's and children's summer clothes. They started with people in their condo community and they have spread their mission, collecting enough items to cloth hundreds of people.

A few times a year people come to us with these ideas of how they can help the people we serve. This winter a middle schooler collected over 500 kids' books for children in our programs. One local musician turned his going way party into a concert benefiting Volunteers of America. The thing that is so special about each of these projects is that they accomplish something that Volunteers of America alone could never do. These acts of kindness call on the special talents and passions of the individuals who organize them.

Every individual has a unique network and skills and it is such a wonderful thing to see people use those gifts to help others in need. We could not be more grateful for all the volunteers who have been inspired to do good works and have graciously chosen to help the people we serve. Thank you!