April Volunteer Spotlight - Paul K!
April 25, 2011
This month's volunteer spotlight is Paul K! Not only does he provide hours of service during both Dining Out for Life and Grande Masquerade, but he's very adamant in encouraging others to do the same.
Here's a look at Paul:
Have you ever held a volunteer position before?
I volunteered for a similar organization in Washington, DC called the Whitman Walker Clinic. I worked in the HIV testing clinic for three years, and also did a little bit of HIV/AIDS education outreach for the organization.
What sparked your interest in volunteering with The Damien Center?
As a person living with HIV and having other friends who also deal with this disease, I wanted to find a way to help others who have been infected and affected by HIV/AIDS in the community.
How do you hope to serve the community and our clients here at The Damien Center?
As a volunteer, I hope that I can show people in the community that HIV/AIDS can affect EVERYONE. Many young people and adults are sexually active, and some still believe that HIV/AIDS is a "gay" disease. I hope that I can be a voice for the organization that ANYONE who engages in unprotected sex can be at risk. The disease doesn't discriminate by age, race, sex, or sexual orientation!
What has been your most memorable moment while volunteering at The Damien Center?
I think that being the volunteer coordinator for the 2010 Grande Masquerade has been my most memorable. We had a really great group of people who worked very hard to plan and pull off a successful experience/event last fall, and the volunteers that we found to help with the event were amazing! Without them, this event or many of the activities/services that The Damien Center provides would be difficult to manage.
What are some attributes that you feel you contribute to The Damien Center and your assigned position?
Passion and compassion!
What are your hobbies and interests?
Volunteering has become an important part of my life as I've gotten older. It's given me a great sense of hope and joy that I can make a difference in others' lives and makes me feel more connected to my community. I also love music and singing and have been a member of St. Paul's Episcopal Church choir since 2007. And as long as I still have any semblance of balance, I try and do a lot of in-line skating on the canal downtown or Monon Trail in the spring/summer.