19 Apr LTSC South Bay Volunteer Kacey Shares Surprising Benefits of Volunteering
When we talk about volunteering, we tend to focus on helping others. That is true and it is a wonderful act, however, it also helps ourselves in many ways: Volunteering increases socializing, improves our physical and mental health, builds self-confidence, provides a sense of purpose, reduces risk of Alzheimer’s, leads to graceful aging, and more. Little Tokyo Service Center (LTSC) gratefully receives supports from 78 volunteers who help our day-to-day services. To celebrate National Volunteer Month in April, we would like to introduce one of our volunteers, Kacey.
I understand that volunteer work is foreign to some Japanese people, but to me, it was very natural.
About 20 years ago, I actually founded a Japanese gay support group. For about five years, we had a monthly meeting at my house. With 35 members at most, it was a lot of work, but worth the effort. So when I retired and didn’t know what to do with my free time, I immediately thought about finding volunteer work.
I knew of LTSC in Little Tokyo, but only recently I learned about its South Bay office, which was more convenient for me. I now take phone calls at the South Bay office once a week. I really enjoy working here. It’s a small office, so has a very welcoming, friendly, family-like atmosphere. Through my volunteer work at LTSC, I have surprisingly realized that so many people in our community need help. I admire that LTSC staff take time to listen to each person’s concerns and problems. It is not an easy job. It takes a lot of patience, dedication, respect, and compassion. Having said that, I think community members like us are very lucky to have a place like LTSC where we can turn to when we have some issues.
My weekly volunteer work at LTSC has definitely enriched my retirement life. It gives me structure in my daily life, an opportunity to socialize with people, and a feeling of being a responsible community member. Otherwise, I might have just stayed home watching TV most of the day. I am very grateful to be a part of LTSC as a volunteer.
Visit LTSC’s VolunteerMatch page to find upcoming volunteer opportunities.