Library Diva's Guide to Volunteering…

{February 21, 2011}   Who wants to volunteer? Eye Do!

This is a popular story in Volunteer Manager Circles…Enjoy…

The Lions Club supports an Eye Bank in Washington and Idaho; the Eye Bank performs over 400 cornea transplants each year. Frequently donated corneas from deceased persons must be specially packed and delivered by bus or train to the donor’s location, requiring a volunteer to pick up the package and deliver it to the hospital. One night, the program coordinator was desperate; she had a package on a bus to Spokane and no one to pick it up.  She frantically called the list of emergency volunteers…it was after 1 am.

She reached a very sleepy man and explained what she needed.  The irritated man told her yes, he had volunteered to be on the contact list but specified afternoons and evenings before 8 pm, and in good weather only.

“It’s 1 am and snowing here!” he protested. “I’ll do it this one time, but please, don’t ever call me again.” He got up, and as he was getting dressed, his 13-year-old son came out and asked what he was doing; when he learned that his dad had to “run an errand”, he asked to go along.

They drove in silence through the snow to the bus station, picked up the package, and drove to the hospital. On the trip home, the son asked what the package had been. Dad explained that it was tissue from the eyes of someone who had died, and that tissue was going to help someone else see again. The boy digested that for a moment, then said. “Gee, Dad, I never knew you did such important things!” The next day, the man called the coordinator back.

“You can call me anytime you need to,” he said…


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