Volunteer Appreciation and an Amazing Volunteer
Today I was able to celebrate volunteers that helped us with our tax assistance program here at the Spanish Center. Since January we have been a site for low income tax preparation. We have helped over 50 people prepare their taxes for free. Volunteer recruiting for this was honestly like pulling teeth. The moment I told people I needed volunteers for tax season, they became uninterested. I was able to find 5 volunteers that were absolutely amazing during tax season. Most of the people that came into the Spanish Center for tax preparation didn’t speak English well, or they were uneducated on taxes and had no idea what to do.
Volunteers went above and beyond to help every person who came into the Spanish Center for help. One volunteer in particular, Diana Gutierrez, a 19 yr old employee here at the Center offered to volunteer for the program. While working 8 hour days and attending school she would stay after work and help out for the tax program. She would translate, greet, and file taxes for people who came in. She hadn’t even filed her own taxes before so this was a new area for her. She took all the online training and was able to file for anyone who came in. Many people were immigrants and didn’t have license and social security numbers which made it more complicated, but Diana was still able to help everyone.
Today at the Center we celebrated these volunteers with a volunteer recognition event. I was able to get a cake and goodies to offer to the volunteers. Each one got a certificate, and their name was announced in front of the group we had. It meant so much to me that we were able to do something for our volunteers. Countless hours were put in by them and to me saying thank-you was not enough. I just hope every volunteer knows how much they are appreciated!!