Volunteer of the Month

Our featured volunteers for the month of March are Jan Barrett and Martha Brooks from our Two Rivers Center. Here are their interviews:

Name: Jan Barrett
Center: Two Rivers

Q: What made you interested in volunteering with Meals on Wheels People?
A:
After I retired, I was looking for an opportunity to participate in my community. I have always hoped to work with older adults and the structure of Meals on Wheels works well for me.

Q: What do you enjoy most about your volunteer experience?
A:
I enjoy the diversity of the clients and also working with the staff and other volunteers. I meet people who I would not come into contact with if not for Meals on Wheels.

Q: What inspires you?
A
: The smiles and appreciation of the clients. It feels so good when a client says “I really look forward to seeing you!”

Q: How has volunteering with Meals on Wheels People impacted your life?
A:
I am a people person and missed interacting with others after I retired. Also, I have a continuous appreciation of my health when I see what others are coping with.

Q: What do you like to do when you’re not volunteering?
A:
I enjoy walking with my dog, gardening and spending time with family and friends.

Q: Where would you go for your dream vacation?
A:
Hawaii! I have never been and have always dreamed of going there.

Name: Martha Brooks
Center: Two Rivers

Q: What made you interested in volunteering with Meals on Wheels People?
A:
I hadn’t thought about volunteering for MOW until my neighbor told me about her experience delivering meals. I went on a “ride along” and it was clear that I could also easily contribute my time in this way. The MOW in north Portland has been a great match for me personally. I do not have a assigned route instead I fill in for missing drivers on various routes.  This allows me to travel with my husband, but when I’m in town I can make a difference by delivering meals several days a week. It is a win-win situation.

Q: What do you enjoy most about your volunteer experience?
A:
After a 30-year career in service to people, I found that aspect of my life missing during my retirement.  I enjoy being useful with my time. MOW allows me to help people who are often too shy or embarrassed to ask for help. Delivering MOW energizes my day.

Q: What inspires you?
A: The MOW clients provide my inspiration. In my quiet time, I find myself thinking about the people I meet each day. Clearly, they need help, I am happy to be part of that help.

Q: How has volunteering with Meals on Wheels People impacted your life?
A: MOW gives a focus to my day that allows me to contribute to my community. It has changed what I do and who I am.

Q: What do you like to do when you’re not volunteering?
A: My husband and I enjoy camping. We travel the United States in a camper seeking out dark, quiet camping sites, spending our days hiking and looking at birds. When I am at home, I ride my bike most days.

Q: Where would you go for your dream vacation?
A: Galapagos Islands!!!

Thanks, Jan and Martha, for your unwavering commitment to older adults and helping us change lives, one meal at a time!

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