A.G. Rhodes Health & Rehab

April is National Volunteer Recognition Month: Volunteer Spotlights


April is National Volunteer Recognition Month and we thank our dedicated volunteers for their service to the seniors at the A.G. Rhodes homes. We are holding volunteer recognition events this month to honor the numerous individuals, families and groups who selflessly give of their time and talents, and here are just a few examples of the many volunteers who enrich the lives of our elders.

Dr. Nathan Grigsby
Volunteer at A.G. Rhodes of Atlanta

Dr. Nathan Grigsby

What inspired you to start volunteering at A.G. Rhodes, and what do you do there?

My mother-in-law came to stay at A.G. Rhodes following an injury, and when I visited, I ran into a former music student who I used to teach when he was in high school. He was singing at A.G. Rhodes’ monthly Sing-a-Long. I talked with Ms. Johnson [the A.G. Rhodes Activities Director] about getting involved, and I also began volunteering each month at the Sing-a-Longs.

Additionally, since I’ve been working at Agnes Scott for 30 years as the Director of the Joyful Noise Gospel Choir there, I started bringing the choir to perform twice a year for the residents. We’ve been coming for about 3 years now and the students love it.

What about volunteering with seniors is special/meaningful?

Going back to my experience with my mother-in-law—who ended up living with us before she passed away—there’s a special feeling when taking care of family. When I began volunteering at A.G. Rhodes, that feeling extended here, and the seniors became like my family.

Why is performing at A.G. Rhodes meaningful for you and your students?

As a Gospel Choir, we are singing about the word of God, and our main mission is to serve. As we minister this music, we’re serving, and there’s no greater feeling.

Young people come to college for different experiences, and the Joyful Noise Choir—while they do earn class credit—specifically joined the choir to sing gospel music. It’s an honor for them to be able to spread the good news at A.G. Rhodes. To see the residents’ expressions—them raising their hands, clapping, and even crying—it’s a very tangible and meaningful experience.

Is there anything else you would like to add about why you volunteer?

I feel humbled and grateful to volunteer at A.G. Rhodes. In my walk with Christ, I’m called to be a servant. I want to be honest and sincere in my service, and that’s how I feel when I give back at A.G. Rhodes. In the Bible, 1 Thessalonians 4 calls us to live to please God. I feel God is pleased because this service is coming from my heart.

 

Mike Olietti
Volunteer at A.G. Rhodes of Cobb

Mike Olietti

What inspired you to start volunteering at A.G. Rhodes?

I was first introduced to A.G. Rhodes when I attended a holiday caroling event. Meeting the residents and staff, I felt inspired to contribute on a more regular basis.

What are your volunteer duties?  What do you do in the Country Store?

I volunteer weekly on Saturdays to host Scrabble, assist the staff in escorting the residents to the common areas and socialize with the residents. Occasionally, I assist the residents with making crafts. The Country Store duties includes managing inventory, pricing, donating and selling items. Along with other special events, such as holiday Black Friday and a monthly clearance events.

What do you like most about volunteering at A.G. Rhodes?

The satisfaction of seeing a smile on a resident’s face when taking the time to actually spend personal time with them. During the 1 ½ years that I’ve been volunteering, I have learned quite a bit from them sharing their life experiences and words of wisdom. I always leave with a sense of enrichment and look forward to returning the following week.

How do you feel the Country Store helps the elders?

I feel the Country Store creates a sense of independence whereby residents are given the opportunity to purchase items of their choice using Activity Dollars. Their ability to purchase personal items increases their sense of pride and dignity.

What about volunteering with seniors is special/meaningful?

Creating relationships with seniors who bring a diverse and individually unique perspective on life. Their sense of humor and positive attitude is inspiring.

Is there anything else you would like to add about why you volunteer?

I feel that the senior demographic is often overlooked and forgotten in today’s society.   Each generation should learn from previous generations, and don’t dismiss their contributions.

 

Renee’ Hassan
Volunteer at A.G. Rhodes at Wesley Woods

Renee’ Hassan and family

What inspired you to start volunteering at A.G. Rhodes?

I started volunteering at A.G. Rhodes for two reasons. I am the leader of outreach ministry at my church and feel that this is God’s will for me. I also missed my grandparents who raised me a lot and I do not get to see them often because they live in Chicago. Since I couldn’t take my kids to spend time with them, I figured this would be close.

What are your volunteer duties? 

I am a service leader for Pebble Tossers Inc. [a nonprofit youth service organization and family volunteering resource that often organizes service projects at A.G. Rhodes]. I oversee the “Sunday Funday with Seniors”. We make crafts, have snacks, read to residents who are visually impaired, put puzzles together, listen to stories and spend time with the seniors.

What do you like most about volunteering at A.G. Rhodes?

I really enjoy listening to the stories from when they were young. It is very fascinating to me. I also really enjoy seeing their faces light up when they see children and listen to them interact.

What about volunteering with seniors is special/meaningful?

That I have gained knowledge, wisdom and patience from spending time with the seniors. I think what I have learned most is to make sure that I take good care of my health.

Is there anything else you would like to add about why you volunteer?

I didn’t think coming to A.G. Rhodes made a difference to the seniors, but one Sunday during a craft when I said I missed them when I don’t come, a resident told me that she loves when I visit and misses me too when I don’t come! That warmed my heart so much!

I volunteer not only because it is my Christian duty to care for God’s people, but also because I enjoy it greatly and my children do as well. I have three teenagers and I do not have to force them to participate. They ask me, “Mom, when is our Sunday to visit A.G. Rhodes!?”

For more information about our volunteer program or to become a volunteer, visit www.agrhodes.org/volunteer, or email volunteer@agrhodes.org.  

April 2018

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