August’s Advocate of the Month: Jeff Brown!

During the week Jeff Brown is a math teacher at Shorewood High School, but on Sunday nights he is an Advocate at Teen Feed. In fact, Jeff has been dedicating his Sunday nights with youth at Teen Feed since November 2006!

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Jeff first learned about Teen Feed when he was in AmeriCorps serving as the U-District Liaison at the UW Carlson Center. As U-District Liaison, Jeff  advocated for youth in the community by connecting the University of Washington students to the homeless youth and service provider community. Jeff supports youth both in and outside of program. Not only does he organize a supply drives, Jeff also went the extra mile by raising funds and running in the Seattle Half Marathon as part of 2011’s Team Teen Feed.

Jeff recently volunteered at Teen Feed Auburn, our new meal program in South King County. The evening ended with him playing a game of basketball with some of the guests he connected with over dinner. Jeff shared that this was his favorite night of Teen Feed…so far.

How long have you been volunteering with Teen Feed?
I started volunteering in November of 2006, so it’s been about 6 years. I’ve been amazed at all of the changes and expansion of services offered to youth. In addition to the nightly meal, Teen Feed now offers more resources to youth in need. Teen Feed keeps doing more and more to help youth and I’m honored to be a part of an organization that is so dedicated.

Why/how did you get involved with Teen Feed?
My girlfriend, Astri was an Advocate at the time and she kept talking about how awesome it was. One day, I had had a particularly long day at work and she suggested I come with her to Teen Feed. I did and was welcomed by former coordinator, Erik Wirkman. The rest is history. Astri and Teen Feed are my rock.

What is your favorite thing about volunteering at Teen Feed?
The number one thing I love about volunteering at Teen Feed is the folks that come in. They have no idea how much they inspire me. They push themselves and pursue finding jobs and housing. The youth inspire me to do my personal best in my own life – in my work and relationships. If they only knew how much they inspire me… I also love the Sunday night volunteer crew! They feel more like a family. Coming to Teen Feed each week recharges me.

What do you like to do outside of volunteering?
I try to stay healthy and active. I go to the gym and run on the outdoor trail. I’m trying to make the most of the summer weather, camping, and rafting.

What did you eat today?
Waffles and yogurt. A cookie. And some watermelon.

What have you learned from volunteering at Teen Feed?
I have learned that there are an infinite number of reasons why people end up at Teen Feed. People can experience misfortunes or be born into unfortunate situations. Each person has a unique story. Teen Feed’s Support Coordination really supports youth and each youth’s individual needs.

Thank you for your dedication, Jeff!If you are interested in being a volunteer at Teen Feed, click here or email volunteer@teenfeed.org to learn more.