- told by Maryellen Skan, HD Volunteer
“As I rang the doorbell, I heard singing as Dave* came to the door. ‘Good day! How wonderful. God bless you for coming with my food,’ Dave continued as he either hummed another tune or sang a short song. Dave was so thankful for the groceries we brought, but more importantly the time together,” Maryellen shared.
Talking with others like Dave is one of the reasons Maryellen volunteers with the Home Delivery (HD) program. But, how did she come to work with HD?
Maryellen Skan began 15 years ago as the liaison between her church, Our Saviours’s Lutheran Church, and CES. She coordinated with church members and CES on several fronts; they volunteer, donate food all year and added CES to their Mission of the Month for both February and March in participation with the Minnesota March FoodShare.
At one point, Maryellen’s congregation did the Home Delivery food distributions at Hiawatha Towers for those who had a hard time getting to the grocery store. She became the coordinator for the volunteers from her church. “It is a great way to involve different age groups with a limited commitment, once a month for us.”
For the past five years, Maryellen has delivered HD on Thursdays to individual clients in need of groceries and produce.
“These people are so special,” said Maryellen. “I enjoy getting to know the clients. Not only do we give them groceries which they really need, we spend some personal time with them, listening to them share, albeit for just a few minutes sometimes. There are many different personalities, but each is so thankful! It is really about the relationships we develop.”
“Recently, my husband and I volunteered at a packing event at Second Harvest Heartland that would go to different food shelves. Saundra Holden from CES informed me that CES is able to get those items at $.03 a pound. What a trickle down effect! At CES, it’s wonderful to work alongside many organizations who supply food to those in need, much of which goes to HD clients.”
Maryellen continued, “Volunteering with CES Home Delivery is a great opportunity for helping others. I can honestly say that working with the CES staff is great! They work hard, do not complain, and are deeply devoted to serving others every day. I look forward to my time with CES and Home Delivery. It is so rewarding.”
Come join Maryellen and others like her who volunteer, giving cheer and hope to others!
*Client name changed to protect anonymity
“Hey you, come over here and get some food,” a red haired lady behind a walker called as Arden rode past CES on his bike over 10 years ago.
What brought you to CES? I was a Dentist for many years and recently retired. Mt. Olivet has a group that comes to help the Home Delivery (HD) program, of which I have been a part. About one year ago, I began to help HD as the delivery driver on several Mondays and Wednesdays a month as well as packing pet food for Ani-Meals, a pet food distribution.
What keeps you coming back? Basically, I go home thankful for what I have. It has been enlightening; when I see the callousness of others towards those in need, I am grateful to be able to make a little difference. Although I have contact with clients only once a month, I am beginning to feel a connection with them.