Volunteering not only helps others, but can be good for your own health and well-being, as well. In honor of National Volunteer Week, EmblemHealth asked employees how they give back to their community through volunteer work. Here are some of their stories.
Deirdre Garrett-Scott, Senior Vendor Specialist
On January 16, 2017, Martin Luther King’s holiday, my sorority sisters and I partnered with New York Cares to make blankets for premature babies who reside in New York City shelters. We learned how to make “no sew” blankets and were featured in the New York Daily News and CBS local news. Being able to participate in this project was very rewarding, just knowing we made the blankets from love and these blankets would be keeping the babies warm.
Christine O’Connor, Account Management Senior Director
My three children and I are active volunteers with the Community Mayors, a charitable organization serving special needs children in the five boroughs of New York City. Our work helps thousands of children experience recreational activities tailored to their needs. We also volunteer with Meal Train, cooking together and delivering meals to families in crisis in our community.
Tarnisha Garvin, Grievance and Appeals Manager
I work with a charity called 2000 Spays and Neuters Foundation, Inc. I foster cats and ensure they get good homes (see the above picture of my daughter and one of my rescues). I love what I do because I am saving lives on a daily basis. In one such case, I rescued a cat named Paul from the Animal Care and Control euthanasia list. He had a bad neck injury but he was the most lovable cat I have ever known. His wounds are healing and he has a new lease on life thanks to this charity. Soon he will give someone as much joy as he gives me and my family!
Gregory Rider, Corporate Compliance Director
As part of the New York City Gay Men’s Chorus, I spent a morning at the VOICE Charter School in Long Island City talking with students on the topic “Why Sing?“ We answered questions during homerooms and shared with these students the reasons we sing. We also performed three songs with them, had them sing with us for one song, and shared personal stories about how singing helped us find our own voice, deal with tragedy, and deal with anti-gay bullying. And we shared how singing brings joy and healing.
Olivia Fischetti, Digital Strategy Manager
When loved ones are affected by Alzheimer’s disease and/or dementia, families and friends are faced with so much uncertainty. That’s why I volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Association. I work with the national chapter to deliver educational presentations throughout New York City. It’s the best feeling when someone comes up to us at a table and is so grateful just for information!