Carolyn Yates, founding board member with Stacey Redman, Foundation President

Carolyn Yates (R), founding board member with Stacey Redman (L), Foundation President and Founder

"It is my desire that at the end of the day, my time was spent helping to light more candles than are being blown out. The Tim Griffith Foundation has allowed me the opportunity to do just that in a very direct way. That's why I volunteer."

 

I am a busy person. Ask my sister who resorts to messaging my friends to make sure I'm OK. Ask my friend who invited me to a luncheon that I RSVP'd yes to-- only to find it was a week past the event (OK, maybe I'm busy and also not the most organized). I work at a tech company during the week and manage a small micro-farm on the side. I can honestly say -- my days are full, my nights run late, and my weekends are never long enough. Same as most everyone I know.

Why do I add volunteering for the Tim Griffith Foundation? First, let me explain what I do with the foundation. I'm on the Board of Directors and before you start thinking about cushy board roles, let me clarify that we are a working board which means we plan, prepare and participate in our events. We stuff envelopes, share stories, solicit donations and recruit volunteers. Basically we do what needs doing-- from soup to nuts as my mother would say.

I also co-facilitate the Meadowlark Retreats for mothers who are suffering from the sudden loss of a child. In September we held our first retreat for mothers' that lost an infant child.

The retreats were born out of Stacey's loss for Tim, and they are our way of providing support to those living with an unbearable loss. So why do I add all of this to my tightly woven life? I do this because this effort is the gold thread in the fabric. This is not time spent on activities I will forget later, but energy offered to something bigger than myself. And I am rewarded with an experience of meaning that resonates far beyond the moment.

There is much disillusionment and fragmentation in this world-- and lately it appears to be growing. What I have found to be true is that authentic offerings of connection and support kindles a spirit of hope in this midst of separation and isolation. Within hope there is the possibility for healing. This is the mission and focus of the Tim Griffith Foundation. I have seen how even one small measure of hope can shift a person and have a positive impact far beyond the individual and that moment. It is my desire that at the end of the day, my time was spent helping to light more candles than are being blown out. The Tim Griffith Foundation has allowed me the opportunity to do just that in a very direct way. That's why I volunteer.