Volunteering

Volunteer Spotlight: National Volunteer Month 2018

BEAM would like to thank the volunteers that participated in National Volunteer Month this April! 

 Publix Serves Day volunteers who built two new boxes in the Grace Garden, painted the Jax Beach food pantry and sorted food at our Beaches Community Food Bank.

Publix Serves Day volunteers who built two new boxes in the Grace Garden, painted the Jax Beach food pantry and sorted food at our Beaches Community Food Bank.

BEAM helps make a difference in the lives of those in our community, and we would not be able to do so without the help of our faithful volunteers.

 Beach Church in Jacksonville Beach donated 8,793 pounds of food.

Beach Church in Jacksonville Beach donated 8,793 pounds of food.

Volunteer Spotlight: Kristen

  Kristen is a mother of two young children and takes time out once a week to volunteer at BEAM Thrift’s Shetter Avenue location. She also recently founded a nonprofit organization that helps people with Parkinson’s disease through non-contact boxing-based fitness training.   “'Give it a little love.'  Those are the words spoken by my lovely friend and manager of the BEAM Thrift on Shetter Avenue, Suzie Chisolm, that continue to echo not only in the context of a cozy corner in my favorite shop, but also inside my mind as I make the most of each day, living with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease.     After 20 years of serving both the adult and pediatric population as a Speech-Language Pathologist in Atlanta, Georgia, my life and that of my young family took a detour when I was given a Parkinson’s diagnosis at the age of 43. Just 6 months after my diagnosis, our family moved to Ponte Vedra Beach.  Once our family got settled into our home and school community, I had an urge to do what I had done for over 20 years as a therapist – help others. With my love of thrifting, BEAM was a natural fit, and volunteering at the Shetter Avenue store with my BEAM family quickly became a favorite day of every week!  Knowing the love and support of BEAM, it wasn’t surprising that each became a cheerleader in my pursuit to be the voice for others less able.  I was soon on a mission to help the Parkinson’s community by bringing an evidence-based exercise program known to combat the daily symptoms of this progressive disease to my new home town, Jacksonville. In January of this year, we proudly opened Rock Steady Boxing Jacksonville’s doors to 9 brave Parkinson’s fighters!   My husband and I often say that Parkinson’s disease has been an “unfortunate blessing” in our lives, for it has given me and my family more than it has taken at this point.  It’s provided a new path, an opportunity to help others, leading us to encounter amazing people, and witness true compassion from so many.  I just give each day “a little love” and receive so much more in return."  - Kristen

Kristen is a mother of two young children and takes time out once a week to volunteer at BEAM Thrift’s Shetter Avenue location. She also recently founded a nonprofit organization that helps people with Parkinson’s disease through non-contact boxing-based fitness training.

“'Give it a little love.'  Those are the words spoken by my lovely friend and manager of the BEAM Thrift on Shetter Avenue, Suzie Chisolm, that continue to echo not only in the context of a cozy corner in my favorite shop, but also inside my mind as I make the most of each day, living with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease.   

After 20 years of serving both the adult and pediatric population as a Speech-Language Pathologist in Atlanta, Georgia, my life and that of my young family took a detour when I was given a Parkinson’s diagnosis at the age of 43. Just 6 months after my diagnosis, our family moved to Ponte Vedra Beach.  Once our family got settled into our home and school community, I had an urge to do what I had done for over 20 years as a therapist – help others. With my love of thrifting, BEAM was a natural fit, and volunteering at the Shetter Avenue store with my BEAM family quickly became a favorite day of every week!  Knowing the love and support of BEAM, it wasn’t surprising that each became a cheerleader in my pursuit to be the voice for others less able.  I was soon on a mission to help the Parkinson’s community by bringing an evidence-based exercise program known to combat the daily symptoms of this progressive disease to my new home town, Jacksonville. In January of this year, we proudly opened Rock Steady Boxing Jacksonville’s doors to 9 brave Parkinson’s fighters! 

My husband and I often say that Parkinson’s disease has been an “unfortunate blessing” in our lives, for it has given me and my family more than it has taken at this point.  It’s provided a new path, an opportunity to help others, leading us to encounter amazing people, and witness true compassion from so many.  I just give each day “a little love” and receive so much more in return."

- Kristen

VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT: SUZANNE AND AUSTIN

“I was the first one of us to volunteer at BEAM. My neighbor volunteered in the front office one morning a week and suggested I come visit and see for myself. She asked me to fill in for her while she was away and I’ve been here ever since.

I decided I wanted to also try volunteering in the food pantry and they needed someone on Monday afternoons. This was during the time that the pantry was included in the building with the offices and it was often barely controlled chaos – but also fun!

Austin decided to join us on Monday afternoons and we both continue to love doing it. We have both also volunteered at the Back to School event each August for the past several years. We have done the backpacks with Karen Wolfson.

We have seen so many changes – opening the new pantry, Grace Garden, computerized client records to mention only a few. All initiated by Susan King’s leadership. BEAM continues to be a very special part of our lives.”

– Suzanne

BEAM’S VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT: ALAN

“Some 7 years ago I volunteered a wheelbarrow to a friend who was hauling donated cans of food for BEAM. After he explained to me about BEAM, he had me as well as my truck! I am so grateful to that friend for the opportunity he gave me to help my friends and neighbors who live in our communities and have a need that I can help with. All of our clients need to understand that we do not offer charity, we but ask them to share in the bounty of food and services that are abundant and available for those in need. I feel blessed that I have something to offer them. I love to help people that for whatever reason can use my help. It is my way of ‘giving something back’.” – Alan G

BEAMS VOLUNTEER SPOTLIGHT SHINES ON CARLOYN

Congratulations to Carolyn as BEAM’s Volunteer of the Quarter.  Carolyn retired from her job as a business technology teacher and was looking for something to do. Her mother had volunteered at a food pantry when she retired, so Carolyn decided she would try the same thing.

She started volunteering at the front desk 7 years ago and has been with BEAM ever since. Clients come to BEAM in times of difficulty and twice a week, Carolyn’s sweet smile and gracious manner is the greeting they receive when they arrive at our front desk.

Her favorite part about volunteering is interacting with the clients. She says nothing is more rewarding than feeling that you have helped someone have a better day, or even a better life. BEAMs Volunteer Spotlight shines on Carolyn for her spirit and compassion and truly being an asset to BEAM.