Monday, July 15, 2013

Volunteering With Red Cross

A year ago, I never thought that I would actually be volunteering for The American Red Cross.  I’ve always watched on television how much help they’ve done for families around the world and that made me want to help out too.  Finally, in the beginning of the year, I was going through a lot and I knew that I needed to do something to help me forget about everything and do something for others.  I decided to sign up to volunteer at the Kern Chapter of the American Red Cross.  

I signed up for the Department Assistant position; then in March, Health and Safety Director, Gaby Tamayo called me to offer me the job.  I was extremely happy because I was finally going to be a part of a cause greater than myself.  I’ve been with the Red Cross now for about 5 months and it has been great! All the ladies that work at the office are always welcoming, crazy, fun, professional, and hardworking individuals.  I do a lot as a Department Assistant, which may include a lot of tedious work, but I love it!  If I’m not working at my other two jobs, you’ll find me at the Red Cross doing paper and computer work.  

I have also attended many health fairs.  Being very introverted and not one to initiate conversations, these health fairs helped me open up and talk to strangers about the key services and mission of the ARC.  My first health fair was with the Volunteer Coordinator, Amy Mayer.  She made the experience exciting and fun.  Once I went to at least two health fairs, I had the urge and confidence to do more without being shy.  Since then, I attend pretty much every health fair opportunity that comes my way.  I am also a part of the Disaster Action Team (DAT) and eagerly await my first fire call.  

My friends have asked me why I put so much of my time into assisting the Red Cross when they don’t pay me.  I tell them that I don’t do it because of the money; I do it because I love it.  I have gained friendships, experience, and love for my community.  Helping others has always been in my blood and the Red Cross has given me the opportunity to pursue it.

Written by American Red Cross Volunteer, Evelyn Herrera

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