Why I Volunteer: Love In Action
International Volunteer Day was this past weekend, and we wanted to take this opportunity to recognize and thank the over 165 volunteers who make it possible for LWB to do what we do: help and care for orphaned and impoverished children in China. Sidney, Laurie, and Sandi share their thoughts on why they use their time and talents volunteering for LWB.
More than once every day I see news come in about the children we are lucky enough to help through LWB, and I just have to stop what I’m doing and feel: Feel amazed, astounded, humbled, joyful. I’m often moved to tears, most of the time because my heart is soaring, and yes, occasionally because it is breaking.
The fact that all of this happens only out of the generosity and kindness of others is a daily reminder that love is powerful. Crazy good things happen when people come together with love, and I get to witness that all day long.
~Sidney Pogatchnik, Xinzhou Foster Care Assistant Coordinator and Assistant Blog Coordinator
Volunteering for LWB is a tangible way for me to make a difference in the lives of orphans. Having two adopted daughters from China, I know personally what a difference a family can make in a child’s life. I am passionate about putting the time and talents that I’ve been given to help as many children as possible find forever homes. That starts with improving their lives with medical intervention, nutrition, and loving care that LWB’s Healing Homes provide.
I have had a lot of conversations that center around the orphan problem being too overwhelming. People don’t get involved because they can’t fix it. Well, everyday I work with a team of amazing people who do their parts to make a difference. Together, we are changing the world with LOVE – AND the children we serve have potential to be the next generation of world changers.
Orphans don’t mean anything as a nameless/faceless “world problem”. However, people who have met my daughters gasp at the thought that they could have died of malnutrition, or go their whole lives without the medical care they needed, or even be without a family’s love and protection.
There are still orphans today. There will still be orphans tomorrow. But if we all work together, we WILL change the world.
I volunteer for LWB for my girls. Because I am unable to turn my back and ignore the thousands of other kids who have a rough start to life and need cheerleaders in their corner. Now that I have seen it, I’m responsible for it.
~Laurie Sweeney, Healing Homes Associate Director and Anhui Healing Home Coordinator
Shortly after adopting our first child in 2003 I began to look for ways to give back to the children still waiting for families. Over and over, Amy Eldridge’s name came up. So that’s where it all started. I continue to volunteer because I know with a certainty that the funds donated go directly to the children we serve in the most efficient and helpful way possible. I love the reporting that we give to our donors so that they know they are making a difference in the life of a child.
I love that there are large and small ways that people can make a difference – and that every donation is valued – whether it be a group of children making bracelets to help orphaned children or donors who have the ability to give large amounts of money. Each is seen as important to the children we serve.
Sandi with Josiah during our 2015 Cleft Medical Exchange
Beyond the direct humanitarian aid we give to the children, the volunteer community of Love Without Boundaries has become a family to me. It’s a community of people who feel passionate about each of the children whose lives we touch….people who work to make the best decisions for each child in our programs, as if they were our own.
Because many of us have adopted, it also is a place of support and encouragement in good and not-so-good times. It’s a place that allows you to change your volunteer duties as the seasons of your life change, knowing that our families come first and sometimes we just don’t have as much time to devote. But whatever we are able to do, from writing thank you notes to traveling on cleft medical missions, is truly appreciated and valued.
~Sandi Glass, Director of Post-Adoption Support
We never cease to be amazed by the incredible spirits and amazing hearts of those who join our LWB family. It is beautiful, humbling and so very encouraging to see their pure dedication as we continue the important work of providing the most compassionate care possible to orphaned and impoverished children.