After July’s Jesuit Volunteer Corps Anniversary edition of the Volunteer Spotlight, we’re now taking some time with one of CCC’s most flexible volunteers, Deborah, as she tells us about her behind-the-scenes tasks, many volunteer roles and impressions of CCC!
Name: My name is Deborah Dory, as in finding Dory…but I do know who I am, ha!
Position: I would be considered an On-Call Administrative Volunteer.
What kind of projects have you participated in as an On-Call Administrative Volunteer?
Let’s see, you might have to jog my memory on some things but I enjoyed them all. I can remember the childcare, the donor envelope filling and signing addresses, and doing some [phone-call] invites for one of the donor programs a couple of times and medical records filing and archiving quite a bit. Data entry with the grants documentation with both the Quality Management and the Supportive Housing programs. The recent one was with the Imani Program: some of their photocopying and re-orchestrating their filing. Just all the range is very enjoyable and it’s just a great program that you guys are doing. Great work. I like it all.
How did you first hear about Central City Concern?
Well I always knew about Central City Concern. It was a long time ago…when I was working at DePaul Treatment Center, and I knew about it then because a lot of the clients were going into housing and there were some other programs, the Letty Owings Center [and others], that we referred to through outpatient and things. And then of course you’d hear about different things you guys were doing and you’d see the buildings that you guys were doing.
Do you think you’ve learned a lot about the organization since you first started volunteering?
Well, I think one of the things I learned is that the staff is committed, both emotionally and professionally. You want to assume that when you’re doing nonprofit work but it just more solidifies that the people are devoted and happy that they’re there.
Of these various projects that you’ve done with CCC, do you have a favorite?
I like the donor program. Helping with that you realize that people are going about their daily lives and so it’s using your charisma to encourage them to continue supporting the work. You had to use some of your skillset more than just being in a room and filing or being at a computer doing data entry.
And of course, I think I’m just simple. I enjoyed filing the medical stuff because I take that in very high regard and I take pride in filing things right. I guess I could say something that I’ve learned, or something that I already know, is that I’m a person who really upholds confidentiality and I hold that sensitivity to a very high esteem.
What words of advice do you have for somebody on the fence about volunteering?
Just go to the site and see what they do. For me, I kind of got a feel before I started so for the most part a lot of people would have heard your name before too. It’s not many hours you have to commit, so it’s worth a try because it’s good and necessary work that you guys do, and from there you can be hooked. What’s a small commitment for at least an emotional reward?
Do you have any parting words about your time as a volunteer?
Well, I think I just enjoy the process. It wasn’t that I could just walk in and start volunteering so I appreciate that professionalism. I look forward to doing more things and learning more about the programs but so far they have been vast and all of them exciting. I don’t want to just say that I want this specific thing because I know there is so much more. And just connecting with the human condition and there are all these different issues as far as trying to empower people so I know that I don’t just want to commit to one specific area.