Kathleen is a sixth grade special education teacher and a single mom of two teenagers. She loves to set an example for her children and students through her volunteer work at the Mission on how every person matters and should be treated with respect.
What initially inspired you to volunteer at Denver Rescue Mission?
I have been volunteering for two years now. When the pandemic shut down schools, I wanted to help somewhere that I could make a difference and help out in person. I went on a drive through Denver one day and was stopped at a stoplight right by Lawrence Street Shelter and decided to look into volunteering. Simple as that! I took it as a sign that I should see if I can help.
What’s your favorite part about volunteering?
My love language is acts of service, so volunteering and connecting with the guests at the 48th Avenue Center location “fills my bucket” every week. I love getting there early and helping because it energizes me for my week ahead. The guys love when I remember them from week to week and love to hear about my family and stories about my week. They always say they love that I take the time to talk to them and hear their stories as well.
What would you say to encourage others to volunteer at the Mission?
Making someone’s day fills my heart! I feel like I can make a difference with just serving a meal and acknowledging they exist by sharing stories and sitting and talking with them. Any little job you do TRULY makes a difference and the employees there could not do their job without the help of volunteers. All volunteers make a difference.
This post is part of May’s Changing Lives Newsletter. This month, we’re telling Joella’s story of growth in the Mission’s STAR Transitional Program.