Volunteer Appreciation Week–Meet Julie!

Volunteer Appreciation Week–Meet Julie!

Meet One of Our Fabulous Volunteers!

Julie Dorn has been volunteering with Hammer as a mentor to Stephanie since July 2020. 

Stephanie with her mentor, Julie.

Why do you choose to volunteer with Hammer Residences?
I have volunteered with other organizations in the past, but I was looking for a way to give back in a more meaningful way. Once I left my corporate job in 2019, I focused on becoming more involved in the community. I read articles about Hammer and thought it was a great organization to get involved with.  

What has your volunteering experience looked like?
I volunteer weekly and am a mentor to Stephanie. We do a lot of fun things together. One of my favorite memories was when we built a gingerbread house for the holidays. It was the first time Stephanie had built one, and she had a blast. And of course, we munched on the candy the entire time we were putting it together. We go on walks and bike rides, and I’ve introduced her to yoga. We enjoy taking trips to Michael’s craft store to pick out supplies for making cards or other crafts. We’ve journaled, written down what we’ve accomplished, and what we want to do. We talk about how far we want to walk or a different exercise we want to try. Sometimes we’ll go and get ice cream.

What keeps you engaged?
I feel like Stephanie counts on me to be there for her—she’s so appreciative of the time I’m there. I wasn’t expecting that. We do different activities each visit, and I enjoy our time together. She puts a smile on my face.

How has volunteering at Hammer impacted your life?
Volunteering has helped me to slow down the pace of my life and not take anything for granted. I know I get as much or more out of mentoring Stephanie as she does.

What advice do you have for someone who is considering volunteering with Hammer?
It’s a very rewarding experience, and the individuals served by Hammer really love spending time with their volunteers. You will be surprised about how much you learn about yourself and others too.

Julie and Stephanie enjoy doing creative projects together.

Stephanie and Julie out for a stroll around the neighborhood.

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