They say those who can, do… and those who can do more, volunteer. Community volunteers, like recently retired SD Human Services Center employee, Colleen Craig- Davis, continue to make Yankton thrive by getting involved and doing more. Thanks to her efforts, Craig- Davis was recognized as United Way of Greater Yankton’s February 2018 Volunteer of the Month.
“Go-getter is the best word to describe Colleen,” stated Lois Halbur, SD Human Services Center colleague, who nominated Craig-Davis for the award. “Everyone knows that if Colleen is behind a cause, it will receive her 100% attention and dedication. She is the motivator for many, drawing people in to support those in need.”
We asked Colleen to share in her own words more about her volunteer efforts.
I began volunteering by watching my parents. My mother always enjoyed baking for others. My siblings and I would be the ones who would deliver the baked goods. Delivery also included a visit with the folks who were usually not able to bake for themselves or were homebound. I have continued this tradition with my family, although I am now the baker, deliverer and visitor. It is an activity I have always enjoyed.
Through the years my volunteer work has evolved. I began volunteering at my church, at my children’s schools and activities, United Way, Interchange, and with various other activities and causes. I have continued with many of those and most recently have also enjoyed helping at the Emmaus House and with One Yankton. The Emmaus House provides hospitality for women and children visiting their loved ones who may be in prison or hospitalized. One Yankton is a new group formed in Yankton to advocate for truth, compassion, and diversity in our area.
Volunteer work is enjoyable because I enjoy organizing, socializing, and serving others. Community service offers diverse opportunities to help others. Through volunteer activities I have been able to connect with many people who I may otherwise never have met, as well as join forces with friends and family on volunteer activities and causes.
The advice I would give to those thinking about getting out there and volunteering in their communities is volunteering offers opportunities to everyone, regardless of skill level, available time, and accessible resources. Even brief volunteer service can bring amazing results for those in need. As Ralph Waldo Emerson discusses in his quote about success, “To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived…this is to have succeeded!” If we all find ways to help others in our community, we can all succeed together.
For more information on local volunteer opportunities or to nominate a Volunteer of the Month, visit www.yanktonunitedway.org/volunteer or call United Way of Greater Yankton at (605) 665-6766.