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Santa

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PARALYZED VETERANS OF AMERICA
July 6, 2011

I was impressed with the way this organization helps others with spinal cord injuries when I volunteered to play Santa Claus for the annual Christmas lunch at Jefferson Barracks VA Hospital five years ago. I was so humbled that I proceeded to volunteer each year thereafter. I can't think of a finer group of people to help!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

The veterans were thrilled to be remembered over the holidays. It was a touching scene and not only brought tears to some of their eyes, but my own. That is why I continue to play Santa for them each year. The Chapter put a lot of money into providing lunch for the inpatients and outpatients, as well as purchasing gift bags. They even were as detailed as to remember sugar-free candy for the diabetics so that no one was left out.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Give them more money to expand their programs. I'm unable to do this, though, so I volunteer my time each year to brighten the day of a vet.

More feedback

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

Send me pictures of the event for a keepsake.

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

I've met many good people. Feeling that overwhelming sense of emotion that comes over you every time you visit a veteran in their hospital room and give them a moment of your time to listen to their story or hold their hand and tell them "thank you for your service" was life changing for me.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

I will never forget how it makes me feel to help those who truly need it and I look forward to the event each December.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

MY ROLE:
Volunteer & The Gateway Chapter provided me with a sack full of gifts and candy to hand out to the patients in the SCI Unit. The local sewing circle made lap blankets for the patients and had dropped them off at the Chapter office, so my wife (dressed as Mrs. Claus).