Eleven individuals and organizations were honored at the Volunteer Center’s Outstanding Volunteer of the Year Awards luncheon last month. And three of the winners reside or volunteer in East Dallas.
Lakehill Preparatory School – Outstanding Youth Group
The students of Lakehill Preparatory School are committed to helping East Dallas senior citizens, and they hosted a December luncheon for more than 80 seniors. Each senior received a new blanket and holiday stocking filled with presents donated by students.
Their commitment to seniors includes monthly food deliveries to indigent seniors, Christmas cards made by Lakehill art students, volunteering at the Senior Citizens’ Craft Fair, class participation in Adopt-A-Grandparent and a spring picnic for seniors.
Community service isn’t mandatory at Lakehill, but 100 percent of the student body and faculty participate in service projects.
Gale Paul – Outstanding Volunteer Coordinator
Every weekend, volunteers can be found mowing lawns, swinging hammers and painting walls for low-income, elderly and disabled homeowners throughout the City. Gale Paul, program coordinator for People Helping People, brings them together.
People helping People is a City program that provides minor home repair to disadvantaged homeowners. In 1991, Paul recruited more than 4,000 volunteers who contributed more than 31,000 hours. Since 1984, more than 1,000 homeowners have been helped.
Paul pioneered corporate and group volunteerism, encouraging companies to spend a day refurbishing homes.
“She got people who never volunteered in their lives to volunteer once, then twice, and again,” says Donna Ritchie, who is organizing a similar program in Garland.
Lynne Albright – Outstanding Individual Volunteer
Dallas police officer and East Dallas resident Lynne Albright volunteers at Bryan’s House, a residential and day-care center for children affected by AIDS. She accompanies children on clinic trips, visits them in the hospital and escorts them to special events.
“Lynne has gone about and beyond what was expected of a volunteer, using her time and her position to help make life better for our children,” says Cherry Walker, Bryan’s House volunteer coordinator.
Albright has arranged visits from the mounted police, the motorcycle patrol and McGruff, the crime-fighting dog. The kids at Bryan’s House also have visited the Central Patrol Station, where they were treated to cookies and juice.
The Volunteer Center (826-6767) is a United Way agency serving as a clearing house to recruit and refer volunteers for more than 750 Dallas agencies. Thousands of positions are available; call the center if you are interested in volunteering. Among the examples:
BE A FRIEND of the frail elderly and their families. Volunteers can provide companionship, escorted transportation, telephone reassurance, and do shopping errands. Individuals and groups are needed for this in-home program coordinated by the Visiting Nurses Association.
SHOOT SOME HOOPS and volunteer at Hoop-It-Up, and annual basketball tournament benefiting The Family Place. More than 700 volunteers are needed June 27-28 as game monitors, scorekeepers and timers. Training is provided.
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