Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Vol. CLIV, Issue 10
Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Breaking the Bubble: To all volunteers

This week in Breaking the Bubble, we decided not to offer commentary on Whitman volunteers or service organizations, not to highlight any specific community groups for recognition nor point out any pressing community need. Instead, we asked community groups to share their thoughts.

Their overall message: Thank you.

This thank you is for the time spent walking dogs, visiting grade-schoolers or grandparents, building houses, restoring streams and more. Many of you have worked tirelessly, and for that we think you, and the community partners you have worked with, deserve congratulations! Don’t believe us? Check out these responses from service groups.

Christine Ludwig, an Intervention Specialist at Prospect Point Elementary who works closely with the Whitman Mentor Program stressed the mentors’ impact on the children.

“I would like to tell the Whitman volunteers thank you. Kids get happy when they see their mentor. You  make their day. You make their week. One kid told me that the best day of his whole year is going to Whitman. He just doesn’t get many experiences like that,” she said. “The whole year kind of culminates in [Mentees to campus day]. When they visit a college campus and have so much fun, that is so much more powerful than me saying ‘get good grades.'”

Gary Henderson is the build coordinator for Blue Mountain Habitat for Humanity. According to Gary, Whitman volunteers have been largely responsible for all the exterior paint, much of the siding, leveling and installing sod in the 1,400-square-foot backyard.

From the contributions of the SCORE pre-orientation trip to the efforts of students and parents working alongside President George Bridges during October’s Make a Difference Day, the Habitat home at 112 Donald St. has had substantial Whitman support since August.

“[Whitman students] are fun to work with because they want to learn, pay attention and follow directions. The students and the coordinating staff at Whitman have been outstanding at our worksite. I enjoy the camaraderie and we appreciate the fine work they do for this fine organization,” Henderson said.

The new homeowners will be dedicating their house this Saturday, Dec. 12, at a public ceremony.

Crissy Kinney, Coordinator of Volunteers and Humane Education at the Blue Mountain Humane Society, told us her organization could not support itself without devoted volunteer efforts.

“Volunteers at Blue Mountain Humane Society are integral to our existence,” she said. “This fall we have had over 2,500 volunteer hours. We truly, truly appreciate the help that they give. When students come, they come in force and they are helpful and energetic and ready to do whatever we ask.”

We also asked community groups to share any particular anecdotes regarding Whitman volunteers.

Greer Buchanan, assistant director of the Kirkman House, particularly enjoyed working with a group of unlikely shepherds this fall.

“Watching a group of Sigma Chis herding twenty plus sheep in the rain at our Sheep to Shawl event in October was a riot,” he said.

Obviously, we aren’t capable of summarizing three months worth of community service into our little column here. We just wanted to make sure that you, the volunteer, got something a little more than self-congratulation at the end of the semester.

We wanted you to hear from the people whose jobs you make easier and lives a little brighter. We wanted you to hear, from the community you affect, their message. In the words of Ludwig, “thank you for coming, and for caring.”

Keep living the dream.

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