The Rewards of Volunteering

By: Alison Cundiff
Resource Development Associate

For the past few months, I have had the rewarding opportunity to spend a few hours every month with some of the students at Guadalupe Schools. They have a very organized volunteer program that is tailored to the needs of each student.  Each visit would start with the child reading two books, followed by various activities such as rhyming and word patterns. I was constantly amazed at how bright all of the children were! For a lot of them, English is their second language. What a huge hurdle to jump over! Those kids taught me so much more than I taught them.  They were a bright part of my week and always made me laugh.  These kids are up against so much at home or in their neighborhoods yet they still come to school excited and eager to learn.

At the end of the school year, the volunteer program had a thank-you lunch for all of the volunteers. I was delighted to hear that some of the volunteers had been helping at Guadalupe Schools for over 15 years!  In each and every case, these long term volunteers cited the children as the primary purpose for coming back year after year. What a testament to the power of volunteer work and the benefits it brings to both the volunteer and those being served. In most cases, the benefits far outweigh the costs.

I encourage everyone to take the opportunity to volunteer. There are so many wonderful options to fit any interest or passion. Visit our United Way 2-1-1 website  today to find more information about volunteer opportunities in Davis, Salt Lake, Summit and Tooele counties.

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