Announcing the Nominees for Our 2016 Thank-a-Volunteer Campaign (Part II)

Volunteers at a food drive.

Yesterday, we shared the first round of nominees for our 2016 Thank-a-Volunteer campaign, which gives family- and youth-serving programs the chance to acknowledge their incredible volunteers.

Here is the second group of nominees for 2016! (Don’t see your volunteer on this list? Make sure to check out Part I of this story.)

Jennifer S., nominated by Healthy Babies Project, Washington, D.C.

A volunteer since 2012, Jennifer exemplifies the motto that to whom much is given, much is expected, and brought her village to work with and mentor our pregnant teen mothers. Under Jennifer’s direction, members of Iota Phi Lambda sorority, Washington D.C. chapter, came to our transitional house to facilitate programs, worked one-on-one with our girls, sponsored them for Christmas, and assisted us with fundraising and cooking.

Rashida B., nominated by National Runaway Safeline, Chicago

The National Runaway Safeline (NRS), an organization that helps keep America’s runaway, homeless, and at-risk youth safe and off the streets, has honored Rashida as its 2016 Volunteer of the Year. Since 2013, she has volunteered more than 192 hours of service in the 1-800-RUNAWAY crisis services center. Over the past two-and-a-half years, she has helped youth through hotline and online services, including reconnecting youth with their families through NRS' Home Free program offered in collaboration with Greyhound Lines, Inc. Rashida was recognized for exceeding her commitment to assisting youth and their families across the country at NRS’ Volunteer and Community Recognition Event held on April 27. "Volunteers like Rashida are the lifeblood of our organization, and without them we wouldn’t be as effective in providing the prevention and crisis intervention resources needed by youth, their families, and community members today," said Maureen Blaha, NRS' executive director. "We congratulate Rashida on this honor, and sincerely thank her for giving selflessly of her time and talents."

John J., nominated by National Runaway Safeline, Chicago

John has been a volunteer since 1993, back when NRS was still called the National Runaway Switchboard. Since that time, he has been not only a regular volunteer, but also a great contributor to our culture, our crisis center, and our community. John typically volunteers on Friday nights and has willingly attended extra trainings and seminars and embraced every upgrade we’ve had through the years. We are truly thankful for his steadfast dedication!

Michele L., nominated by National Runaway Safeline, Chicago

Michele has been a volunteer for more than 9 years and given more than 482 hours of service. Michele completed our 40 hours of training for assisting runaway, homeless, and at-risk youth. She was nominated as Volunteer of the Month in October 2007. She is also a donor and has been on the board of directors from 2008 to 2011, and again from 2013 to present. Despite living in Indiana, she loyally makes the trek to our office in Chicago every week as our “most long-distance liner!” We are very grateful for her contribution to our agency.

Laura S., nominated by The Night Ministry, Chicago

Laura is our nominee for extraordinary volunteer with the Youth Outreach Team. We have a partnership with Chicago Adventure Therapy to run Adventure Club, where the youth we serve have opportunities for both urban and “away-from-the-city” adventures. We hike, kayak, climb, camp, and go to museums and nature centers. Laura volunteers with both The Night Ministry and Chicago Adventure Therapy. On Friday mornings before our outings, Laura volunteers at our emergency overnight shelter, The Crib. There she talks up the outing, then she goes on the outing with youth. She has great relationships with the young folks in our program and is there encouraging and supporting them every step of the way. She was there with us dreaming the program into being and is with us as we imagine where it will go.

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