Volunteer Voice: Victoria Williams
My name is Victoria Williams and I am sixteen years old. I started volunteering at Coalition for the Homeless about three years ago when I started eighth grade. I volunteer in the daycare and VPK, aiding in the children’s daily activities and just spending time with them. My school encourages us to find one or two organizations that are meaningful to us and focus our volunteering time there so that we can form relationships and not just “put in the hours.”
I found out about volunteering with the Coalition when my mom started bringing her trained therapy dog to visit the children. I love working with kids, and I wanted to find other ways besides babysitting to do so. I typically volunteer one or two mornings each month during the school year, and more frequently over the summer. I arrive as the children do in the morning and then leave after lunch once I’ve helped put them down for their naps. Since I started three years ago, I have put in over 50 hours of time in the daycare and VPK.
When I am not volunteering, I am acting with my musical theater company – Central Florida Performing Arts, running or biking, reading, or drawing. I also babysit frequently. I continue to support the Coalition because it is so meaningful to know that I am impacting the lives of children. Every time I walk into the room, their little faces light up and they run to me and give me a big hug. I feel so blessed that I am able to make them smile and help them learn with my gifts and talents. It never feels like “work” at all, and I look forward to going as often as I can.
One thing that other people should know about Coalition for the Homeless is that it’s not your typical homeless shelter. They don’t just give out food and blankets. They help you find a job, give you educational outlets and help you get back on your feet. The Coalition keeps families together and encourages you to regain your independence.
They are a one of a kind organization.
We would not be able to do what we do without gracious volunteers like Victoria who donate their time throughout the year. If you have time, passion, or a special talent to share, you too can help the Coalition by volunteering.