This week we want to introduce you to one of our volunteers, Cris Perro, who helps out at our Shelter and in various other ways around the organization.
Tell us a little about yourself:
I grew up in Massachusetts and love all the seasons we experience. Yes, even the winters! I’ve worked in Human Resources for most of my career. I’ve always been the kind of person that likes to help out others. That quality carried over nicely when it came to deciding where I wanted to be of service as a volunteer. I follow the local sports teams but my favorite sport is hockey. Go B’s! I’ve been blessed to share my joy of food, movies and books with my family and friends.
How did you get involved at REACH?
I started working in Waltham in 2005. When I told my friend, Bill Segal, about my new job, he and his wife met me for dinner to congratulate me and talk about REACH. I was looking for some kind of volunteer work and this seemed like a perfect fit.
What are some of the roles you’ve held or projects you’ve worked on over the years?
I volunteer at the shelter one night a week. While at the house I’ve been involved with answering the hotline, doing buddy shifts with new volunteers, interacting with the survivors and the kids, and the annual Spring-cleaning. I’ve also helped out at the Annual Meeting and the Holiday Gift Party. Just recently I met with the Peer Leaders from Waltham High and discussed skills for interviewing their new members. I think I’m known best at the house and in the office for my baking skills.
What do you like most about volunteering with REACH?
I love REACH’s goal to empower the people that come to them due to domestic violence. I’ve been blessed that I’ve never had a domestic violence incident in my life. I’ve learned so much about domestic violence, shelters, the intricate workings of the State and all the programs they offer. I’ve learned how strong the survivors are. They have been through some tough times but still have a big heart and a willingness to better their life. I’ve learned how blessed I am to have family and friends that would support me if I needed help. I’ve come to recognize how lucky I am to have the simple things in life like a job, a car, a roof over my head, and food whenever I want it. Every night when I leave the shelter I am reminded how important my family and friends are to my own welfare. I am reminded how lucky we all are to have REACH and other shelters to help out those that don’t have that kind of support. I had no idea when I first started volunteering how fulfilling it would be.
What would you tell someone who is thinking about volunteering with REACH but not sure if they should get involved?
I would tell them to go for it!! It’s an amazing experience to give with no agenda and no expectations. Not only will REACH benefit from their efforts but I also believe they would get much more back from volunteering their time and efforts to such a great organization.
For more information about volunteering with REACH, click here.
– See more at: http://www.reachma.org/blog/volunteer-spotlight-cris-perro#sthash.8DFCqNX1.dpuf