The Power to Change A Life

There are so many wonderful things to say about those who give of their time and talents to support Catholic Family Services. Indeed, it’s only the beginning of February and we have dozens of people to thank for their support this year — and through that support, we are blessed to watch lives change. We’d like to highlight the dedication and support of a few of those volunteers here. Perhaps their stories will inspire you to make a difference for, as Thoreau so eloquently put it:

“One is not born into the world to do everything but to do something.”

Last week (and again this week) an unlikely group of volunteers came together to make The Ark Cottages ready for its new tenants. The Ark Cottages will be the first safe and stable housing these homeless youth have experienced in a long time (perhaps in their entire lives). These volunteers wanted to make sure these homes were as comfortable as possible. They moved furniture, organized the units, assembled furniture and cleaned. This week the same group is coming together to assemble the last furnishings — dinettes and chairs — so that youth have a nice place to eat and work when they move in next week. Three of the volunteers, Louis Boehm, Dan Bannigan, and Sean Wilson, are seniors at Hackett Catholic High School.  Ron Williams and his children, Turner and Caelyn, have known about the project and generously supported it since its inception. Each saw a specific need and gave a few hours to make this happen; the impact will be lifelong!

This week is Catholic Schools Week and three area schools have been generous supporters of Catholic Family Services for many years. Students make baby blankets, adopt clients and their families for the holidays, help with landscaping and The Ark Garden, and reach out to meet our clients’ needs in so many ways. We chose to attend these schools and present their staff and students with a certificate recognizing their ongoing support, a humble way to say thanks for their commitment and engagement with our agency. On Monday, staff travelled to Hackett Catholic High School, St Monica’s School, and St Augustine’s school. We were able to meet with school administrators and students and let them know how much we appreciate what they do for our agency. These photos capture just a portion of our gratitude for this service!

Perhaps you have considered volunteering for Catholic Family Services or at another location in the community. You may feel inadequate, wondering what you can offer and what you can do. These amazing volunteers are proof that every single person has something to offer and can be a contributing member of their community, working for positive change.  According to Dr Martin Luther King Junior,

“Everyone can be great because anyone can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t even have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love.”

If you’d like to learn more about volunteering opportunities at Catholic Family Services, please contact Jeannine Boehm at 269-381-1234. Our clients and our community would love to meet you!


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