This month, we’re starting a new feature at Hope for Kids: Volunteer Spotlights! This week we interviewed Raquel Rodriguez. Raquel has been a faithful volunteer during many of our Club Hope events and also makes confirmation phone calls to families prior to events. She is now serving on the Hope for Kids Board of Directors!
Through these volunteer spotlights, we not only want to brag on our amazing volunteers: we want to give them a chance to share! I had a chance to interview Raquel this afternoon, and you can read her story below.
How did you start working with Hope for Kids?
I’ve always had a pull to get involved with kids, especially at my church–in the nursery, on the Board of Christian Education, and in helping with Sunday school curriculums. I tend to gravitate towards preschool-age kids especially, and I coordinated nursery ministry. I first heard about Hope for Kids when Matt spoke at Church of the Acres where I was attending. Along with another Hope for Kids volunteer, I helped with a Life Skills craft workshop for HFK and volunteered in the kitchen during Basketball Camp! I don’t remember the point when I volunteered to make phone calls for Club Hope, but that has been a blessing.
What is one experience or relationship that stands out to you in your work with the ministry?
My favorite story has to be about this one little boy who comes from a big family. The first time he came to Club Hope, he was confused about where to go and didn’t want to leave his sister. [He also speaks only Spanish and was not able to communicate.] But when he was watching the volunteers welcoming his family and working together, it helped calm his separation anxiety. Working with him is heartwarming for me–I have a connection with him. I look at these kids and see me when I first came to the United States. My mother came with nine children. We have the same struggles. Where these kids come from, that’s where I came from too.
How has your life or your walk with the Lord been changed through your time with Hope for Kids?
I think it has helped me to first of all have a closer relationship with God, because I see the amazing work that God is doing. He is using us to do an amazing work in the community. Not just with Hope for Kids, but anywhere we have contact especially with children around us. My eyes are open more, and I want to have God use me any way He can.
Thank you for all you do, Raquel! You are truly an irreplaceable gift to our ministry and we are so thankful for the ways you serve the Lord with your unique gifts.