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Letter: Do what you love -- volunteer

To the editor:

Volunteer!

Sit on a committee? Help at a church, hospital, or school event? Volunteer to drive? Mow lawns? Find a way.

Motivations for volunteering are numerous, personal, unique; e.g. helping others, feeling needed, being productive, less isolated. Be involved in something you're passionate about. Volunteering might be the best and only way to do that!

Consider the value of volunteerism within communities — of people contributing and improved outlooks on life. What's the dollar value of volunteer positions in for-profit/non-profit businesses? Most everything volunteers do is cost effective and priceless.

In 2017, 201 Foster Grandparent Program volunteers served 135,411 hours assisting 9,170 children at 101 different locations in Central Minnesota. They do this because their passion is helping children to thrive, to succeed. Schools benefit significantly when they provide affordable, effective support for students.

Foster Grandparent classroom involvement improves students' school readiness, reading/math scores, and interest in reading. Teachers receive crucial assistance from dedicated assistants. Children (and their families) benefit from positive attention focused on specific needs including academic tutoring with social/emotional mentoring. Foster Grandparents benefit from rewarding work, including intergenerational relationships with kids and school staff, heart/mind healthy activities, plus! This is an amazing volunteer opportunity if you enjoy spending time with kids.

Do what you love through volunteering! You get the picture. Be IN the picture.

Pat Scherf

Area Supervisor, Catholic Charities Central MN Foster Grandparent Program

St. Cloud, MN

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