Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Extraordinary Volunteers!

This National Volunteer's Week I want to nominate my mom. For as long as I can remember my parents have instilled in us the importance of volunteering and giving back to the community. I have spent hours upon hours helping my parents set up and clean up for different events, main refreshment stands, selling tickets, I've even dressed up as a scarecrow for a local harvest festival.

As a kid this was just my norm. We were at every event and my parents were often busy for weeks before helping to get ready. Now that I'm an adult and have my own job and my own family I can truly see what a sacrifice they made. Whether they were building a playground, picking up garbage on rid litter day, chairing the Harvest Festival, selling flowers with the fire department, or selling 50/50's to raise money for childhood illnesses it seemed like every month they were doing something.
My parents and their co-chairs at a very rainy Harvest Festival

So as you can see, this was very often a family affair. So why would I nominate my mom and not my dad? Believe me, he is just as deserving taking part in all of those activities as well as being a volunteer fireman. But the difference is that over the past years my father has been honored by the community on multiple occasions for his volunteer efforts, even becoming "Volunteer of the Year." But what fails to be mentioned is his silent yet strong supporter. My mom has stood by his side through every event. She has stayed up till all hours of the night putting her artistic talents to work making banners and signs.

In my eyes my mother is already a winner. She has made a difference in her community and that's all she ever wanted out of her work. But she has also made a difference in my life. I am no where near the volunteer that she was and still is, but I am thrilled when she asks me to help her out or when an opportunity arises in my own community to put my life lessons to work. I can only hope that as the years go by and my children grow that I can increase my time and efforts in the community and lead by example for my own children.

Do you know a special volunteer who deserves some recognition?  Do you know someone who always puts others first?  Do you know someone who will volunteer to clean up a the end of an event and not complain?  Do you know a volunteer who will be the first to arrive and last to leave a school function, church service, awards ceremony, etc?  If so, we want to hear about this special volunteer.  

Carolina Pad and VolunteerSpot.com have teamed together to make National Volunteer Week special for those people who do the dirty work and don’t get the recognition they deserve.  We would like to hear from YOU about your special volunteer!  We are looking for bloggers to write an original post about a special someone you know who makes a difference in your life and community and promote the CarolinaPad/VolunteerSpot giveaway.  We would love to hear a teacher's story about their room mom, a Room Mom’s story about the parent that never fails to step up, or a story about a coach or Scout Leader that inspires her kids.

VolunteerSpot is a FREE online resource for volunteers to organize events, a soccer season, church fundraiser and many, many more other volunteer events. VolunteerSpot's FREE online signup sheets make it easy for anyone to schedule and coordinate parent volunteers  -- say goodbye to reply all email and clipboard sign up sheets this spring!

Click the image to enter this exciting contest! 
Contest is open from March 21 - April 1