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Passion and a Promise: Volunteering from the Heart

VAW_ball_blog2By Laura E. Sanders, Delta Xi, Denison University

Volunteering for something you love, something that has helped to shape you and is in your core, is easy. Not that the volunteer tasks themselves are easy, but the drive and the motivation to give back comes naturally. Alpha Chi Omega helped me become the woman I am today in so many ways that it is only natural for me to want to give back to the organization, our chapters and my sisters.

As an initiated sister of Delta Xi, I miss out on one part of the alumna experience that so many sisters enjoy. I can no longer return to my chapter house and meet new women who have joined our sisterhood, as Delta Xi closed in 2008. While this pulled at my heartstrings, it also reminded me how much bigger Alpha Chi Omega is than our initiating chapters. Yes, that experience shaped my collegiate understanding of sisterhood; yet, I have grown and learned so much more recently as an alumna member.

My “story” as an alumna volunteer is an interesting and varied one. Of course I think it is interesting, because I lived it. In truth, the fact that I have had the opportunity to share my talents with Alpha Chi as a specialist, co-director of collegiate volunteers, convention teller, member of the volunteer management team and now a province collegiate chair has filled me with such pride for all we can do as a sisterhood. There are days when I wish my email would stop filling up or the phone wouldn’t chirp at me, but those days are few and far between. Seeing the strength and wisdom our sisters across the country are able to willingly pour into this thing we call sisterhood is astounding. Impactful work makes a soul and heart happy. I know the impact I can make as a volunteer working with alumnae advisors and collegiate leaders is tremendous. Conversely, I have learned so much from other volunteers and collegiate sisters that I keep growing and learning with each interaction. On days that my passion is waning, I need but a text from a chapter president to remind me that we do amazing things together.

Time and talent are precious commodities, the value of which cannot be simply understood. I give my time, talents and small treasures to Alpha Chi Omega because I think of myself as a bit of a gardener. (I like allegories and metaphors, if you haven’t yet noticed.) I believe as volunteers we are able to plant a seed, fertilize it, water it and then watch with pride as it grows. Sisterhood, leadership, commitment to serve others and knowledge of Alpha Chi Omega grow strongly in others when we help by volunteering. The overflow I have experienced within my heart and mind as I volunteer with sisters keeps me coming back for more. Together we seek the heights, not just as an organization or chapter, but also as real, strong women.

One Comment

  1. JSBH |

    Beautiful and perfect:
    ” I give my time, talents and small treasures to Alpha Chi Omega because I think of myself as a bit of a gardener…I believe as volunteers we are able to plant a seed, fertilize it, water it and then watch with pride as it grows. Sisterhood, leadership, commitment to serve others and knowledge of Alpha Chi Omega grow strongly in others when we help by volunteering.”