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A Few Hours a Week Go a Long Way

by Joyce N.

I have been a Red Cross Volunteer affiliated with the Washtenaw County Chapter in Ann Arbor, Michigan for almost 4 years. Because I have a full time job, I cannot volunteer as much as I would like but am able to find 8 or so hours a week to join in the efforts of a fixture of my hometown.

I do nothing heroic but rather offer the office skills I use in my daily life to assist the paid staff direct the volunteers who provide Red Cross services to the community. Stuffing envelopes, filing documents, or making copies to distribute isn't very romantic but helps make the wheels keep turning.

I also work for three hours every week in the Chapter's Blood Donor Center. I really enjoy interacting with the donors as they make their life-giving contributions. It’s a pretty easy way to help save a life and I use the time with them to encourage their continued blood donations and also encourage them to join in other Red Cross efforts. I also help with volunteer orientations, handing out information at community events as part of the Ambassadors group.

I do nothing earthshaking or particularly important on its own but small efforts, like mine, done by enough people become movements, and in the case of the American Red Cross, save lives and become the backbone of successful communities.

Joyce finds spare time in her schedule to commit to her local American Red Cross. By committing these hours to her community, she realizes her full potential. To follow in Joyce’s footsteps, find your local Red Cross at http://www.redcross.org/en/volunteertime or keyword search at Serve.gov: “Red Cross.”

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