#2013alive: How do You Give Back?


#2013alive: How do You Give Back?

For week 3 of August’s 12 Months of Wellness, some alive staff members share their volunteering stories.

“I serve here voluntarily”—Troilus and Cressida

Midway through week three of August’s 12 Months of Wellness, we’re checking in to share some personal volunteering stories—and hear some of yours too!

For example, I love Shakespeare, but my days are sadly lacking in opportunities to wax poetic about regicide and iambic pentameter. (Seriously, what’s up with that?) Thankfully, volunteering at Vancouver’s Bard on the Beach for a few days during the summer fills this void in my life.

But I can’t hog all the glory. Here’s how a few other alive staff members contribute to their communities.

Karla Gursche, Advertising Account Manager: I volunteer at a summer camp for kids. Most recently, the campers were 10- to 12-year-old boys. I coordinate the kitchen, and we cook for 180 people. The camp is on a small island in the beauty of Howe Sound. It’s the highlight of my year.

Isabela Vera, Editorial Intern: When I was about 13, I used to spend my Saturdays volunteering at my local animal shelter. I would clean about 35 rabbit cages over the course of the morning, which often involved pulling antisocial and frequently vicious rabbits out of their cages and smushing them into my chest as they struggled to escape so that I could bring them into a smaller enclosure while I emptied out their rancid litter boxes and shavings. I was usually left with red scratches all over my arms and neck from their overgrown nails, which tended to swell up a bit because I’m mildly allergic to pet dander. Despite these drawbacks, I took great satisfaction out of my position. Occasionally I would also be responsible for walking dogs and spending time with the cats, two tasks which were slightly more enjoyable.

Leah Payne, Editor: My mom runs a local rhythmic gymnastics club, which I used to participate in when I was younger. Even though I no longer do gymnastics, I still find myself writing and editing for the club (one thing that comes with being an editor is having people around you ask you to proofread their work all the time!). I also still volunteer for the club’s holiday and year-end performances. Usually this means working the admission table, setting up, and helping out with the younger gymnasts. I love seeing the girls grow up over the years—and also chatting with their parents! Being involved in something for so long definitely creates a “community” feel.

Have you experienced the helper’s high?

Those are a few of our volunteering highlights. How do you give back to your community? Share your stories with us in the comments below, or chat us up on Facebook and Twitter (with the hashtag #2013alive).

P.S. Do you still need an August goal sheet?


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