A letter from the Volunteer Coordinator at Sierra Community House

Most of us remember where we were one year ago, when COVID-19 began to change everything in our lives. I remember where I was when I found out that our offices were closing, and we would be moving to virtual services.  Our team changed gears overnight and have kept their foot on the pedal ever since.

As the anniversary of the lock-down passes, there is one memory that lingers with me, phones ringing. Frantic parents calling for services to secure food and legal protection for their families. Community members calling our offices for the first time asking for help.

In the midst of the noise and of the fear, we also witnessed hope. On one end we had people calling for help, and on the other end, people calling TO help.

I can go on about how much we accomplished in this last year, however I cannot share without talking about the unseen heroes, our volunteers.

It has been a pleasure working with these fine people who day after day showed up ready to serve and show kindness and love to their neighbors .Our volunteers have donated  thousands of hours this past year.

This has ranged from packing and delivering food to our community, answering our 24/7 Crisis Helpline, volunteer attorneys who have not stopped seeing clients since day one of the lock-down, to our dedicated Board of Directors who continue to lead courageously through uncharted territory.

And, we cannot forget about our long-time volunteers who didn’t retreat at the sight of struggle, but have stuck with us since the very beginning. This includes our wonderful AARP tax preparers who still managed to prepare our community members taxes, as they have done for 10 years.

Our work will not be complete until there is peace, justice, and love in every corner of our community, however the yoke is easy to bear with our volunteers by our side.

-Mayra Islas 

To learn more about volunteer opportunities at Sierra Community House, contact [email protected].