- The Power of Giving Back -
Our Mission: To provide a central location for both community members and organizations to fill their volunteering needs. There is a strong need for volunteers in many of our local organizations and a strong passion for community members to give their time and talents. Our goal is that this site provides those wanting to volunteer the opportunity to find the perfect match for their service desires and for organizations to have an additional avenue to share with the community their volunteer needs.
LET US HELP YOU SERVE SHELBY!
Shortly after I retired from teaching in 2006, Janet Compton called and asked if I would be willing to substitute for a while for Meals on Wheels since her delivery partner was going to be off for a while. When that person couldn’t return to the route, I continued delivering with Janet three to four times per month. Janet and I are friends from high school so we can always find plenty to talk about along the three and one half to four hour route. I subbed for two other individuals while they were off for health reasons, and I ultimately added those days too. Currently, I deliver 8-9 days per month and sometimes more when needed. I call it my exercise routine in lieu of visiting the gym. There are usually seven heavy food containers to lift, a van to exit and enter while delivering to up to 60 individuals, and lots of vigorous walking including stairs. The physical benefits pale in comparison to the feeling of satisfaction from helping others maintain a healthy independent life as long as possible.
It is important to maintain stability both for the clients we serve as well as for the Meals on Wheels organization. I think my life as an educator prepared me for this particular volunteer situation as you can’t just stay home, there are people waiting on you to help them. I was raised by great community-minded parents, Mac and Lela McKeand, who believed in being dependable, responsible, and in giving back to the community. They instilled that focus on my brother and me. Our clients count on us being there not only with their meal(s), but with a smile and a kind word or two. Sometimes we are their only human contact throughout the day. In our brief visit we can quickly sense if things are not normal and make the appropriate calls—family, emergency personnel, etc. Unfortunately, sometimes the crisis situation is obvious and requires quick action. Relatives are always grateful when we call about unusual happenings concerning their loved ones.
There is a feeling of “paying it forward” because we never know when we will need the faithful support of volunteers. However, I volunteer because I truly enjoy making life easier for others, expecting nothing in return. I can wholeheartedly say that I receive far more from delivering Meals on Wheels than I could ever give. I love all of our clients where they are in their various states of health.
Volunteering keeps me young at heart. My mother always told me this. “Age is a state of mind. Keep your mind active and it will help your whole being stay useful to the world.” Meals on Wheels presents a great opportunity to stay physically and mentally active while helping others maintain their independence and health.
Have an event you need volunteers for?
Follow the link below to submit your event and its information to be added to our master calendar and page of events!