October’s Volunteer of the Month: Kathy Boullin
Kathy is a force of nature!
When Kathy believes in something, she is a force of nature! And Kathy believes in Teen Feed and the youth we serve. Kathy donates to Teen Feed, volunteers weekly, and recently organized a benefit event for Teen Feed entitled “Ladies Night Out” at Swansons Nursery. Not only did “Ladies Night Out” providing generous support, it was a great evening for sharing Teen Feed’s work and mission with for hundreds of new friends and supporters. Her firm presence in program and her genuine concern for homeless youth combined with her passion for Teen Feed’s mission make her someone we’re proud to highlight her as October’s Volunteer of the Month. We appreciate the generous spirit and heart you bring to everything you do, Kathy!
How long have you been volunteering with Teen Feed?
Since March of this year.
Why/ how did you get involved with Teen Feed?
My good friend Jenny Rose has been volunteering for a while and started talking about it. So I started donating money and clothes and the like. After a while I decided I wanted to get more involved and see what goes on in program, so I started volunteering.
What is your favorite thing about volunteering at Teen Feed?
I love talking to the guests and understanding they are the same as any other kid that age. It sort of demystifies the sense of homeless people as the “other.”
What do you like to do outside of Teen Feed?
Socialize, visit with friends, garden, ski, lots of outdoor activities, and going out to dinner and enjoying a glass of red wine.
What did you eat today?
A tortilla with egg, tomato, and hot sauce and a cup of tea.
What have you learned from volunteering at Teen Feed?
People are the same regardless of their situation in life. All of the social things that I see in my community I also see at Teen Feed. There is often the loner and the clown in the group as well as a really strong sense of community. I am also starting to understand how much homeless youth are harassed by the police often for small inconsequential infractions. There is more hard drug use than I anticipated. I’ve also learned how difficult basic tasks in life become when you don’t have a fixed place or address. Waking up, getting breakfast, and getting to an appointment on time becomes a complicated ordeal without the luxuries of a kitchen, a bathroom, or a car, not to mention figuring out what to do with your belongings or your pet and trying to maintain presentable hygiene.
I’ve also come to realize that guests who are under the age of 18 have very little available to them and have almost no options other than to go back home or back in to foster care, which are probably not safe situations for them to begin with.