It’s hard to gauge the impact of the kindness that the Friendship Circle volunteers commit to bringing to so many in our community, but one thing that we do know – it is there and it is huge and real. Truth is, if you do want to try and measure it, just ask one of our FC families or proud volunteers just how incredible it is.
You may be thinking that the recipients of this joy and kindness are the Special Children in our community. While this is most certainly true, there are others that these visits affect as well. When a volunteer walks into a home, the entire energy of every one there changes. The atmosphere in the home is lifted just by the presence of the volunteers. Just imagine how many siblings and parents in our community are able to tap into this positivity!
Something incredible that we are witnessing is the volunteers’ deep appreciation to how this is affecting them too. Volunteering is known to be a tremendous boost to a person’s mental health – even science agrees with this! It brings a sense of meaning and appreciation to a persons life and reduces stress in an individual. Our teens are thriving in this role and are constantly sharing with us how it boosts their week and their life.
When families in our community open up their homes to allow the volunteers to have this experience, when the volunteers commit to this program, the ripple effects of change start to trickle through the wider community. The winds of change to being a proud community that embraces and supports our special members is clear for all to see.
From the growing number of volunteers each year, to the level of commitment that is shown by each and every one of them, this program run by the Friendship Circle continues to affect change each and every day.
Friendship Circle kicked off their Friends at Home program after Tishrei, with separate orientation events for their male and female high school aged volunteers.