education and enrichment volunteers

LAURA’S STORY:

Hometown: Evansville, WI

Favorite Book: The entire Harry Potter series

Favorite Quotation: “Time and attention are the most precious gifts you can give someone.” ~ Anonymous

Hobbies: Winter activities! In the winter I curl in two separate leagues and enjoy outdoor figure skating if it is not too cold. In the summer I like to water ski.

How long have you been with People Serving People? Volunteer with People Serving People since April 2013

Favorite memory: I love teaching math skills through card games. Growing up, I learned and practiced basic math skills by playing card games with my parents, grandparents and siblings. I love getting the opportunity to play games with the children at PSP because it makes practicing math fun. My favorite memory at PSP occurred when I was playing a math game with a student and I taught the student how to shuffle the cards!! He was so excited to shuffle. I was confident he was going to show others his new skill and play the game with them later that week (yay to more math practice!).

SUZY’S STORY:

Hometown: Rochester, MN

Favorite quotation: “Stock your mind. It is your house of treasure and no one in the world can interfere with it.”
–Angela’s Ashes

Favorite book: “A Thousand Splendid Suns” by Khaled Hosseini

Hobbies: Dancing, reading, traveling, and exploring!

How long have you been with People Serving People? Suzy has been volunteering with People Serving People for 11 Months.

Suzy’s favorite memory from volunteering at People Serving People:
“One really memorable moment for me was a night when all of the kids and volunteers went around the room saying our ‘highs and lows’ for the day, and one of the girls said her high was getting to come to this program that night. It was nice to see that the kids look forward to this time as much as I do!”

ANNE’S STORY:

Hometown: Minneapolis

How long have you been with People Serving People?    1 year

Favorite book: That’s a hard one, I love to read! The most powerful book I’ve read recently is “Between the World and Me” by Ta-Nehisi Coates. I’ve also just been introduced to “Princess Grace” by Mary Hoffman-love that book!

Hobbies: Reading, making food for friends.

Pets: None, I’m allergic to most everything other than fish.

Favorite quotation: “This life is not concerned with health but with healing. This life is not about our being but about our becoming. This life is not about rest but about exercise. We are not yet what we shall be, but are growing toward it. The process is not yet finished but it is going on. This is not the end but it is the road.” -Martin Luther

Why do you volunteer with People Serving People? My work is with people with ALS/Lou Gehrig’s disease and those who are actively dying. I like hanging out with people at the beginning of their lives. The kids are creative, curious and super fun.

 

JOSH’S STORY:

Hometown: St. Cloud, MN

How long have you been with People Serving People?  I have been with People Serving People for just around a year in total!

Favorite book: I would have to say that my favorite book is The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. I really enjoy this book because of how well it immerses you in the world of the characters. In some ways, I felt like I was a part of the adventure when I read it!

Hobbies: I love spending some of my extra time exercising and playing sports. I have always found exercising to be great way to get a break when things get busy! I also love spending time with my friends and family!

Pets: I have one dog back at home that is going to be 14 years old this upcoming fall!

Favorite quotation: “Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.” -Maya Angelou

Why do you volunteer with People Serving People? I chose to start volunteering at People Serving People because I had volunteered for a similar organization back in my hometown. I loved the mission of People Serving People and I thought that it was amazing how they gave back to the community in such a large way. I continue to volunteer at People Serving People for the sense of community that is there. It is definitely a blessing not only to be able to have an impact on kid’s lives as a mentor and friend, but to be able to have them impact mine in a similar way. They’ve taught me patience, compassion, and also that each kid has the magical ability to change the rules of every board game!

KARL’S STORY:

Hometown: Eagan, MN

How long have you been with People Serving People? March 2016

Favorite Book: A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway

Hobbies: Racquetball, going to baseball games, watching game shows on TV, and spending time with my family

Pets: Two dogs, Bruce and Elvis

Favorite Quotation: “If I got rid of my demons, I’d lose my angels” – Tennessee Williams

Why do you volunteer at People Serving People?
I volunteer at People Serving People because I want to pay the many good deeds forward that so many before have done for me. I think grace and compassion are what keep the world going and this is how I can bring that out of my life.

ANDREW’S STORY:

Hometown: Mahtomedi, MN

How long have you been with People Serving People? For about one year

Favorite Book: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Hobbies: Weightlifting, Nutrition, Basketball, Hiking

Pets: Unfortunately not 🙁

Favorite Quotation: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” James 1:2-3

Why do you volunteer with People Serving People? For much of my life, I have felt compassion for those suffering from homelessness and poverty. I decided that I was not going to sit back and do nothing while this is still an issue. Therefore, I decided that I would use my skills to contribute to an organization, serving those who are in need.

NORA’S STORY

Hometown: Plymouth, MN

How long have you been with People Serving People? One year!

Favorite book: There are too many great books to choose a favorite, but an amazing one I read recently was Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand – a true World War II story depicting the power of the human spirit through desolation and suffering.

Hobbies: Reading, listening to podcasts, planning and executing camping trips and road trips, spending time with my nieces and nephews. My youngest niece is in the picture with me 

Pets: My family has a beagle named Scout. He’s almost 10 years old!

Favorite quotation: “When the root is deep, there is no reason to fear the wind.” – Chinese Proverb

Why do you volunteer with People Serving People? I am continually inspired by the learning that happens in the program. I love being a part of such a wonderful group of students, tutors, and staff!

ANDREW’S STORY
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Hometown: Shoreview, Minnesota

How long have you been with People Serving People? About two years, I think.

Favorite book: My favorite book changes a lot. Right now it’s The Wise Man’s Fear , by Patrick Rothfuss

Hobbies: I love to read, and when I can’t read, I listen to Audiobooks. I also play a lot of board games and role playing games.

Pets: None at the moment. If my wife has her way, soon we will have a dog.

Favorite quotation: “It had flaws, but what does that matter when it comes to matters of the heart? We love what we love. Reason does not enter into it. In many ways, unwise love is the truest love. Anyone can love a thing because. That’s as easy as putting a penny in your pocket. But to love something despite. To know the flaws and love them too. That is rare and pure and perfect.”
― Patrick Rothfuss, The Wise Man’s Fear

Why do you volunteer with People Serving People?:
I serve at People Serving People because I had an abundance of positive role models in my life growing up. I can’t be an abundance of role models in anybody else’s life, but I can try to be one.

EMILY’S STORY
Emily
Hometown: Chicago, IL

How long have you been with PSP? 8 months

Favorite book: Desert Solitaire by Edward Abbey

Hobbies: Running, cycling, backpacking, camping, reading, and trying new types of coffee

Pets: Nope

Favorite quotation: “You’re off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, So… get on your way!” –Dr. Seuss

Why do you volunteer with People Serving People?:
As an Minnesota ReadingCorps member, I have enjoyed volunteering at People Serving People over the past 10 months. Volunteering at People Serving People is a fun, relaxed, and open environment that encourages students to love reading. During the day my job was to teach reading to set students up for success in school, but at night my job was to teach students to love reading. I enjoyed being a part of all aspects of literacy development. Helping every child learn to read is challenging, but the happiness on their faces when students know that reading has become part of their lives is priceless. The moment that fluency becomes a part of their lives is electrifying. I love reading and hanging out with awesome kiddos and inspiring staff!

CORA’S STORY
Cora Harding
How long have you been with PSP? I have been volunteering at People Serving People for two years.

Favorite book: My favorite book is The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver. My favorite book growing up was Roald Dahl’s The BFG.

Hobbies: I love spending time outdoors—taking walks and going camping. I also enjoy crafting, playing with my cat, reading, and spending time with my family.

Pets: I have a cat named Mia and a goldfish named Chester. Chester is three years old!
Favorite quotation: “You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” A. A. Milne

Why do you volunteer with People Serving People?: I started volunteering at PSP to gain service hours for the AmeriCorps program I was in called Minnesota Reading Corps. I loved my time here so much, that I continued to volunteer after I was finished with the program. The kids are a joy to be around and I have learned so much from them. Tutoring at PSP is always the highlight of my week.

JOHN’S STORY:
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John is a long-time volunteer here at People Serving People.  John has spent his time volunteering within Teen Programming and is a favorite amongst the teens.  He also provides a helping hand to the PSP staff, chaperoning field trips on a weekly basis.

When asked what John’s favorite memory is with the teens, he responded:

“I remember watching a beginner songwriter take a rough set of lyrics and build it into a song — melody, beat, layering, everything. That didn’t just happen once, though! I continue to be impressed at how teens can make something pro-level out of a basic idea.”

Thanks John for all that you do!

KATIE’S STORY:
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Katie – a full-time student at the University of Minnesota – has been dedicating her time to People Serving People since October of 2012.  At the peak of her involvement, Katie was at PSP four days a week helping with teen programming, summer activities, and the toddlers!  Today you can find Katie every Thursday in Teen Programming, and every Friday in the toddler room.

When asked what her favorite thing is about working with the teenagers, Katie responded,

“The best part about working with teenagers is that I get to be by their side, watching, as they truly start to figure out who they are and who they want to be, something you definitely don’t experience with toddlers or elementary-aged children.”

Thank you Katie for all your help and commitment!

SHAWN’S STORY:
ShawnTutor_Photo
Shawn is a volunteer tutor at People Serving People. He spends his Wednesday evenings working with school age students on math, reading, and science.

As a tutor, he not only provides educational opportunities, but also emotional and social support. By acting as a mentor to the children he works with, Shawn is able to make connections with children that they may not be able to make elsewhere.

His support allows us to provide high quality tutoring and mentorship services to students staying at People Serving People.

Thank you Shawn!