Volunteers Experience Growth And Opportunity In Transition
In 2007, the world as we knew it started to change in ways we could never have imagined. As the real estate market began to falter, segments of our economy began to fall like dominoes. It wasn’t long before thousands of jobs were cut, and people who had contributed to the tax system became dependent on it for their own support. Highly-educated professionals joined a sea of job hunters trying to navigate through an upstream current of limited opportunities.
| Posted in Volunteerism on Aug 3, 2010 by
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As the recession escalated, the numbers of the unemployed continued to grow. In early 2009, a community initiative called GO! Network was created to empower personal and professional growth and opportunities to the individuals who needed it. The program was launched by the staff of Celtic Creative, one of the organizations that reside within St. Patrick Center in St. Louis.
While all this was going on, I was in the process of trying to develop my freelance business in photography and marketing in a very challenging environment. When I heard about GO! Network on the radio, I decided to attend the first seminar…and that choice changed my life. Previously, I had volunteered to coach a Dale Carnegie class and participated in activities with StLouisGreen and the Optimist Club of St. Louis. Those experiences had been very rewarding, so when the call for action to help run the programs came up, I was eager to get involved.
As a team leader, I worked with other volunteers to develop and launch a marketing and social media plan and helped plan the weekly seminars. As the membership quickly grew, the peers who worked together to provide high-quality programs had a chance to take their skills to a new level. GO! Network attracted thought leaders and provided practical resources for the community. Some of the members landed jobs in their field and others entered into training for a different career. An entrepreneurial division was developed to provide additional resources for start-up businesses that are beginning to grow.
In addition to the doors that have opened since that first seminar, the volunteers in this community have met hundreds of people, made valuable connections and forged lasting friendships. The meaning of volunteer is to perform a service willingly and without pay. You can’t put a price tag on the intrinsic rewards of sharing your time and talent in the service of people who need you.
GO Network Celtic Creative St. Patrick Center St. Louis Networking Volunteerism Nonprofit
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