What’s a person to do when they retire but have always been a ‘people person’ and just cannot— and will not— be found sitting in their home to pass the time? Well… they want to volunteer their time to help others!
Who Are the Marketing Volunteers?
We thank our Marketing Volunteers: Dave and Ann Paton, Marian Friese, Joanne Belson, Dan and Mimsie Brookes, Mary Schafer, Lois Fogg, Edee Carr, Joe Stauffer, Ruthann Fleet, Josie Haines, Roger and Nancy Beebe, Janice Fagerland, Eva Hyde, Harold and Fran Atkins, and Herb and Miiko Horikawa and highlight them in our Volunteer Spotlight.
Whether the Marketing Volunteers have been residents for 12 years, 5 years, 1 year or are moving in this summer, they all have a similar interest in meeting new people and telling every visitor who comes to our campus just how wonderful life at Tel Hai really is!
And for some it’s just as simple as stopping them and saying, ‘hello’! One volunteer mentions that he stops every person he does not recognize and introduces himself. He adds, “I want to get to know as many people as possible and make a positive impact on those I meet.” All of these volunteers say it’s pretty natural to talk highly of Tel Hai and all the great things it has to offer. And boy would they know!
Why Do They Volunteer?
When asked why volunteer, they told us that volunteering:
… is something they’ve always done – and never saw
as an imposition
… keeps them involved and busy – just as they prefer
… is an outlet – an opportunity to meet and talk to people
One volunteer mentioned he wanted to make volunteering an extension of the skills he used for many years while working. He also noted that he saw volunteering as the next chapter in life and finds it very rewarding. Many of the other Marketing Volunteers would definitely agree with him.
What Skills Do They Bring to Marketing?
Volunteers bring a lifetime of experiences, skills, and knowledge to the Marketing Department. Drawing from a broad spectrum careers such as teacher, CPA, OT therapy assistant, musician, kitchen designer, painting contractor, payroll associate, nurse, banking executive, secretary, retail associate, sales manager, purchasing associate, store supervisor, technical writer, quality program manager, librarian, counseling center director, and, last but not least, mother and father, these volunteers find their comfort level and easily fit in to the task of marketing Tel Hai – the one department that can take credit (at least a small part) for bringing all of these volunteers to Tel Hai in the first place: The Marketing Department!
Where Do They Volunteer?
Among the 20 Marketing Volunteers we interviewed, we found volunteers serving in more than 30 areas on and off campus. Now that’s some actively involved people! Among the areas our Marketing Volunteers lend their time includes: the Garrett Community Center Desk, Resident Council, coffee houses, birthday parties, Lakeview and Garrett Community Center Libraries, child day care, Disaster Awareness Team, Tel Hai Camp, music groups, income tax preparation, friendly visiting, Tel Hai Board of Directors, Resale Shop, Honey Brook Library Board, quilting, pool monitor, sew creative, etc.!
And did I forget to mention committees? Many, if not all, Marketing Volunteers are active members of Tel Hai committees that help plan golf events, neighborhood parties, concerts, lectures, trips, teas, luncheons, and MORE!
In fact, these 20 individuals logged more than 5,000 hours in 2014 along with many, many more countless hours that never get logged. That’s a lot of hard work to help visitors and future residents feel right at home on our campus. We were lucky enough they took 30 minutes out of their busy schedules to sit down with us to discuss their volunteering!
What Do They Do?
So what do these Volunteers actually do to help the Marketing team? Well that’s quite a long list as well. Many of the volunteers show their cottage or apartment, greet people in the Welcome Center, luncheons, merchants fair, day in the country, holly trail, calling perspective residents, mailing preparations, peer-to-peer, help at Marketing’s desk on Fridays, new resident “buddy” and yes, more!
These volunteers are dedicated; even when a prospective resident makes a negative comment about the paint selection, this talented group of volunteers turns it around to include a positive note about Tel Hai by saying, “That’s the great thing about Tel Hai. When you move in you get to choose what color you’d like best!”
A “challenge” when volunteering in Marketing comes when a new resident remembers their names and faces, but the volunteer doesn’t remember who they are. One volunteer says that he tries to remember everyone’s name, but after countless tours and prospective residents, names and faces are not as easy to come by. Another volunteer mentions how new residents will come up to them and ask not how they are doing, rather how their dog is doing after meeting her on a tour of their cottage!
No volunteer job is perfect, but all the volunteers agree it’s a great feeling when someone tours their home and a few months later they see their picture on Tel Hai’s closed-circuit television Channel 965 and can say, “Hey! I know them!”
What Do They Prefer?
Each Marketing Volunteer has a favorite part of volunteering and why they continue to be so active in our Tel Hai community. Some say it’s helping others and bringing joy into their lives. Another volunteer feels that by doing the littlest thing, it can make the biggest difference in someone’s life, which in turn is so rewarding. The same volunteer also points out it may seem almost self-centered to do something for someone else because it brings joy to oneself, but that is the essence behind volunteering.
Another volunteer likes to pass along the great, warm feeling she received when touring Tel Hai all those years ago. The group’s general consensus for why they continue to volunteer? You guessed it; because they get to meet new people, socialize and help put a smile on someone else’s face.
Marketing Staff Tells It Like It Is!
Marketing wants to be crystal clear. They don’t want us to think their volunteers impact is only limited to incoming residents. The talented team of Marketing staff members, Cathy Yoder, Tracy Weaver, Jolene Weaver, Tina Cressman, Ginny Crasten and Megan Ranck, RAVE about their dedicated team of volunteers and believe their volunteer assistance in invaluable.
Staff notes how graciously the volunteers fill in whenever they are asked – regardless of the task. In fact, Marketing tells us visitors find the volunteers so helpful and likable, they often ask to speak with the volunteer because they had mistaken the volunteer as staff!
The staff adds that volunteers ALWAYS greet everyone with enthusiasm about life at Tel Hai. They tell us, “Our volunteers are knowledgeable, capable, and they truly are ambassadors for our community.” Ever so appreciative, staff tells us, “Our volunteers open their homes, and we doubt we could do our jobs so well without our dedicated group of volunteers!”
One thing is certain; the Marketing department and our Tel Hai community would not be the same without the effort and heart of these wonderful volunteers!
For their countless hours of opening their homes to potential residents, for greeting guests with a warm smile and an inviting story, for remembering countless names and faces, and for using their skills as a people person we thank our Marketing Volunteers and highlight them in our Volunteer Spotlight!