The value of a volunteer-priceless

Friday, September 7, 2018

 

What difference can volunteers make in a week? During a recent week at Seagull headquarters, a group of adults and teens participating in Student Life Mission Camps shared interests, played games and made crafts with adults in Seagull’s Achievement Center. In an adjacent hallway, medical students from JFK Hospital had traded stethoscopes for paint rollers, brightening the environment. At the front desk, an employee of the Four Seasons Resort was answering phones and greeting visitors to relieve Seagull staff. And in the multi-purpose room, long-time volunteers were transforming the space for the monthly restaurant-style celebration luncheon for participants in the Achievement Center.

The volunteers who give their time so generously at Seagull Services provide a priceless gift to the staff and program participants. Repayment is the excitement and joy on the faces of the adults and teens with disabilities whose lives are touched each day by the dedicated volunteers.

For the volunteers, the joy is infectious. “They just touch your heart,” said Amy Ludwig one of the Seagull volunteers. She and husband, Associate Pastor Jake Ludwig, were leading a group of volunteers from Redeemer City Church. “It’s a wonderful feeling to just play a game or have a conversation,” she added.

The once-monthly transformation of the multi-purpose room into Café Mouette (Seagull Café in French), is another place where hearts and lives are filled with joy. With table cloths, fresh flowers, and a lot of personal service, the clients are treated to a luncheon in what looks like a quaint café, an otherwise rare experience.

“This lunch is a highlight of their month,” said volunteer Katy Rice. “They get to know us as much as we know them. You come out of there happy because you helped somebody and you made them happy.”

There are numerous opportunities to volunteer with Seagull, including helping to chaperone on field trips for adults and teens, sharing a special talent or interest, as well as assisting during special events. The annual Honda Classic 5K Run/Walk that benefits Seagull draws all kinds of volunteers each year.

For more information about volunteer opportunities at Seagull, please call Elizabeth McDermott at 561-842-5814 ext.111.