When did you get involved with VEAP?
I had my first shift in July 2019. I retired in December 2018, and then I took a couple of months to try and figure things out as well as babysit my grandkids. I went to a volunteer fair at a local senior center, and they had someone from VEAP there. After I talked to the volunteer, I said “you know what? I can do that!” So I contacted Courtney and got started.
What volunteer roles do have with VEAP? What is your favorite?
I do phone intake on Monday afternoons and food distribution on Tuesday mornings. I like both of them because they’re different aspects of helping people. On Monday afternoons people are so grateful to be able to come in and pick up some groceries, and then on Tuesday mornings before the pandemic I’d get to see them in person and help them package up the items they shopped for. I also enjoy the people I work with for both shifts as well.
What keeps you volunteering with VEAP?
The feeling of making a difference and having a positive impact on others.
What might someone be surprised to learn about you?
I grew up in a small town in central Minnesota. I have three boys who are all grown now, and two grandkids who are 3 and 1.
What do you do when you aren’t volunteering?
I do Zumba on Tuesday nights and I try and take walks with my neighbors and husband three times a week. I’m also helping a friend of mine at the Bloomington Historical Society adapt to COVID-19 by setting up their location to have one-way traffic when visitors enter and leave. I help her one afternoon a week.
Is there a particular moment or favorite memory that stands out from volunteering?
I got a call the other day from a woman who wasn’t very appreciative of the drive-up system we have in place because she wanted to be able to shop for herself, so I talked with her and convinced her that when she drives up she can tell us what she needs and we’ll do our best to find it for her. This made her feel a lot better so she agreed to sign up, and afterwards it made me feel like I had made an impact. Working in both phones and distribution makes explaining our process a lot easier to participants, so I can comfort them if they’re feeling worried about trying out our new system.
What would you tell someone who is thinking about volunteering at VEAP?
That they should give it a try, see what fits, and go for it! VEAP needs volunteers who can help in all capacities.
Thank you, Rose! Learn more about becoming a volunteer.