Volunteer Spotlight: Tracey Johns
We dearly miss all of our volunteers that do not have the opportunity to come in and volunteer due to the Coronavirus.
In the meantime, we were lucky enough to talk to one of our frequent volunteers Tracey Johns!
She serves as a community service coordinator at an outreach based in Maryland.
How do you feel about service and giving back?
Giving back is extremely important to me, because I truly have a love of service. My mom was very involved in funding multiple not-for profits, and served as the director of a group of Senior Citizens Day Care Centers in NYC, so we learned the importance of helping the elderly, at a very young age. So the seed was in me, and as I grew into an adult, the opportunity to help someone in need, just always brought me much joy and satisfaction.
How did you first get involved with SOME?
I first got involved with SOME when I moved into the DMV, and was working privately as a tutor and chaperone for a family with two young sons. I was put in charge of locating interesting ways to accumulate the required service hours necessary, and I searched for a soup kitchen, and SOME was brought to my attention. We fell in love at the first visit; and over the years I have brought multiple groups of students and adults, to participate in a very diverse selection of SOME events.
What did you like the most about volunteering at SOME?
I love the expressions on the faces of the SOME Clients, children, adults and seniors, when I have the chance to share a kind word over pouring coffee, or serving a plate, and the knowledge that we can put our hand to cheering runners on at the Trot, helping raise funds to continue the extremely important services and programs SOME provides..
One of the nicest interactions I can mention, happened one year when our group made Valentine cards and treat bags, and brought them into the dining room to hand out to the diners who showed up on that day. They were so touched that we added a little extra oomph to the breakfast and lunch in the form of that very simple gift.
What would you say to somebody thinking about volunteering?
I would suggest anyone who wants to make a quality decision about volunteering, particularly if they are not sure what they want to do, to look for an opportunity with SOME. Over the years we have seen several coordinators for the soup kitchen, the Trot, and other activities like a playground build, or cleaning up at the Dwelling Place, and no matter who may serve in the coordinator role, it has always been a way to work with an organization whose heart is truly the people it provides for.