This week marks volunteer appreciation week nationwide and here at the American Red Cross, we would like to take this opportunity to introduce some of our amazing volunteers!
Bonnie has been with the American Red Cross almost 6 years!
Bonnie is the co-supervisor for the interns placed at the American Red Cross. She assists in the initial interviews and orientation for the interns and new volunteers. Bonnie also volunteers for various American Red Cross fundraising events such as Ride for the Red, and Arts Beats and Eats, throughout the year.
Bonnie’s favorite part of volunteering is working and interacting with various volunteers and staff that are present at the American Red Cross. She mentions how everyone is always so warm and welcoming and really likes to think that the work she does contributes to the greater good in the community.
While many of our volunteers get involved in other opportunities outside the Red Cross, Bonnie does not volunteer for any other organization and in fact, restricts her efforts solely to the American Red Cross. She likes that the American Red Cross is a national organization so in case she moves or is relocated, she will be able to find another local chapter to volunteer with. Bonnie enjoys that the Red Cross offers so many different areas and departments that need volunteers. It allows options that volunteers can move into so you can spread your efforts over a wide array of departments, such as working with the Armed Forces or Disaster Relief.
Prior to volunteering, Bonnie spent her days working as a social worker. Now retired, when she is not spending her time at the American Red Cross she is traveling around the world. Bonnie has been to places such as China, Rome, Turkey and Greece, along with taking many tours around the United States. Of course, when she is home she is found spending time with her family and friends.
Our next volunteer we are going to spotlight is Bernie and he has been with the Red Cross for just about 7 years.
Bernie began his volunteer experience by working with the Disaster Action Team (DAT) in the beginning and also was the publicity photographer. Bernie found that the hours of DAT were difficult to get use to and so he focused his time and talent as the photographer for the American Red Cross. He currently goes to events that the Red Cross hosts and takes photographs of the volunteers, event and anything else they need.
Bernie really found that the people are what is enjoys the most. “The people and their attitudes are what is great. They are always very upbeat and always have the same goal which is to help people”. He finds that the attitudes of the people really encompasses everything that the American Red Cross stands for, from helping those affected by a disaster, to assisting those in the military, blood services, and fundraising is such a major aspect of the Southeastern Michigan Regional Chapter
Prior to volunteering at the American Red Cross, Bernie was a teacher for 32 years. He now works part-time at Wayne State University as a student teacher supervisor. He plans on getting involved with Meals on Wheels in the coming months. In his spare time, he enjoys gardening and planting flowers and vegetables and of course, in the summer he loves to kayak and bike ride.
Thank you to Bernie and Bonnie for your hard work and dedication! Let’s give all our volunteers a round of applause!
Written by: Katherine Kneen, Communications Intern.
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