Thursday, August 14, 2008

Volunteer Spotlight: Walter Frazier, Outreach Support

Walter Frazier came to Brandywine Counseling as a volunteer with the Outreach Department in July 2008, and quickly became someone we could depend on to help out. In the first of a series of volunteer spotlights, Walter tells us about his experience in his own words:

I relocated to Wilmington a few months ago and decided that while I am seeking full-time employment I would volunteer at a non-profit agency. I learned about BCI by word of mouth and called to see if my skills might be needed.

In the past 10 years I have served on Boards and committees and even worked for the American Red Cross for 3 years as a program director in Bloomington, Indiana. These experiences have given me the opportunity to learn how important the work of non-profits is to a community.

Just based on the name, I assumed this organization most likely provided substance abuse counseling. Although this counseling is part of Brandywine’s activities, I had no clue there was an outreach department that provides free HIV testing and treatment if necessary, nor did I know of the methadone program for heroin users.

I have spent my time raising funds for the annual HIV Testing Event, which is held this year on August 9. I have found this project to be very fulfilling and relevant to me since I have lost 3 close friends to this wretched disease.

I have been surprised by how BCI approaches its endeavors. BCI provides its professional services without prejudice and blame. I have seen how quickly BCI drops everything when a client walks through the door for help. It has been inspiring.

What I have done while volunteering is very small compared to the activities of the whole organization. I feel gratified thinking one person might be tested for HIV, receive early intervention and live a longer life as a result of my efforts.

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