By Shilpi Priyadarshini, Red Cross Volunteer
Sharon Groves is a former intensive care nurse who says that volunteering for the Red Cross has filled a void in her life. All you have to do is see her car’s license plate that reads “REDCRS” to know she is committed to the organization.
“Back in 2007, my sister, Kim, volunteered for the Red Cross and she would tell me all about her life-changing experiences, which inspired me,” Sharon said. “And, so, I volunteered and started going to fire disaster sites myself.”
It was 12 years ago when Sharon began her volunteer work as a Disaster Action Team (DAT) member, helping to provide food, clothing, and shelter for local families affected by emergencies.
Sharon then became a member of the First Aid Service Team (FAST), acting as a first aid responder at community events, such as art shows and sporting events. She has also spent time as a Health Services (HS) instructor, training HS personnel to operate and provide services in cases of community disaster or shelter openings.
As she volunteered more and more, Sharon said she made a commitment to the organization.
“The impact Red Cross has over peoples’ lives is much more than we can measure. From assisting a family that has lost everything in a fire to providing care to a sick patient, it can mean so much to people to get that help when things are not going their way,” Sharon said.
Now, Sharon is part of the recruitment committee for the Red Cross, helping to recruit volunteers who can give back to society. Along with the Red Cross, she also serves as a volunteer for Honor Flight as a medical guardian for veterans traveling to Washington, D.C. In addition, Sharon owns three golden retrievers that perform therapy work at colleges, hospitals and senior care facilities.
To add to her experiences, most recently Sharon has started working as a Training Services Instructor for the Great Lakes Territory, teaching courses on both CPR and Basic Life Support.
The Red Cross is always in need of time and talent, from administrative workers to emergency service volunteers. To find the right volunteer opportunity for you, visit volunteerConnection.redcross.org