We can make a difference even through the smallest of gestures. On her Day of Giving, Sierra Young, wanted to make the biggest impact she could. Empowered to make a change, she visited not one, but three organizations.
We met with Sierra Young (SY) to go over her Day of Giving experience at the Mid-South Food Bank, Moriah House and the Memphis Union Mission.
AC: For your Day of Giving, what organization did you volunteer for?
SY: I volunteered at the Mid-South Food Bank and provided several necessity items to Moriah House and the Memphis Union Mission.
AC: Can you tell us a bit about these three organizations you visited?
SY: I will start with the Mid-South Food Bank, which provides food to insecure individuals and mobile pantry distribution in several Memphis and surrounding areas (more were added due to covid-19). Also, a diaper and sanitary products drive, and give-away has been provided to individuals as well. Furthermore, the Mid-South Food Bank assists with providing food to 31 counties for needy individuals and families.
On the other hand, the Memphis Union Mission, provides emergency shelter, cooked meals, hygiene, and infection prevention to the homeless men at the location I visited Downtown.
Lastly, the Moriah House, focuses on serving women who have been in abusive relationships, depressed, drug and alcohol abuse, and prostitution and their children. It can accommodate up to 15 women and their children.
AC: Was this your first-time volunteering there?
SY: Yes, this was my first time volunteering at all three organizations.
AC: Are there any requirements for volunteers?
SY: The Memphis Union Mission has a hold on volunteers right now, normally there is a day and time sign-up for different tasks (helping with serving food, clean-up, etc.) both individuals and groups can sign up.
Next, the Moriah House, has the same requirements as the Memphis Union Mission. However, the tasks one can sign up for include babysitting during bible study, clerical duties, as well as clean-up and serving food.
Lastly, to volunteer at the Mid-South Food Bank, one must register through their website on a day and time that’s available. Some of the requirements are closed toed shoes, and not allowed to enter the building before 5mins of scheduled volunteer time. During Covid, masks are required, and gloves are provided by them.
AC: What motivated you to volunteer at these organizations?
SY: Covid-19 has impacted my normal volunteer activities. It hit me that it was a huge blessing for the day of giving to be able to help. I was determined to make the biggest impact on my community on this day which is why I volunteered at all three organizations.
AC: How was your experience while volunteering? What did you do?
SY: At the Mid-South Food Bank, I worked on the project called Operation Christmas where we made Christmas baskets for individuals and families. It felt so good to meet new people and help during these trying times.
Both the Memphis Union Mission and Moriah House were jumping for joy to see that I was so eager to provide basic necessities to their organization.
AC: What would you say to encourage others to participate?
SY: Quotes are always a good way – “Practice being selfless. You end up getting more than you anticipate when your soul is giving” – Anonymous.
AC: Lastly, is there anything you’d like to tell our readers before we go?
SY: Instill these practices with future generations and explain the importance in the process.