Randy Gives Back

Help Celebrate National Volunteer Week

“I think just helping people, and it’s pretty amazing how grateful most people are,” says TrueNorth volunteer, Randy Kinsey, about his favorite part of volunteering. “I’ve just been blessed my whole life, and I just like to try and give back to the community.”

Randy has been volunteering in TrueNorth’s Hunger Prevention Programs for over four years. From being the friendly face greeting Food Center participants to stocking the Food Center and packing Weekend PowerPacks, Randy is a passionate and reliable volunteer.

Randy first came to TrueNorth after retiring to Hesperia. He wanted to find a way to give back to the community–helping those in need get back on their feet. Volunteering has always been important to Randy as he volunteered at a variety of organizations before retirement, such as Habitat for Humanity and various soup kitchens.

Feeding the hungry has always been a passion for Randy, which is why he continues to volunteer with TrueNorth’s Hunger Prevention programs. Being able to meet this essential need for the community has been the most rewarding part for him. Randy says, “To see the smile on people’s faces and to see their gratitude and know that you’re doing something for people that really need the help…it [TrueNorth] is such a blessing for the community.”

Besides seeing the impact his volunteering and TrueNorth’s programs has on the community, Randy has grown as an individual throughout his time at TrueNorth. He enjoys making people feel welcome and reassures those who struggle to ask for help.

“It’s made me a better person by helping other people,” says Randy. He continues to make an impact as he encourages people at his church to volunteer at TrueNorth and has even helped lead a fundraising project there to purchase coats for TrueNorth’s Coats for Kids.

Randy has volunteered over 300 hours at TrueNorth and is looking forward to continuing. He is grateful for the opportunity to make a positive difference in people’s lives and encourages anyone who is interested to do so as well.

Next week is National Volunteer Week–showcasing the vital work of volunteers and how everyone can make a difference in their community, just like Randy. “I just highly encourage it [volunteering]. It’s just, to me, it’s a life-changing experience to be able to give back and help other people,” says Randy.

You can help celebrate National Volunteer Week in a number of ways. From thanking a volunteer to volunteering yourself, you can make a positive difference in someone else’s life. To learn more about volunteer opportunities at TrueNorth, contact Volunteer Hub Coordinator, Charlie Forbes, at cforbes@truenorthservices.org.

Become A Member

Become a Member and Help People Like Julie

Having TrueNorth, that’s what kept me going,” says housing participant Julie. “Like I know if I just do this and if I just do that…I have this and I can use it, and if I use it properly, I’ll get there.”

Julie is a survivor of domestic violence, and in her recovery, came to TrueNorth Community Services for assistance in getting her own place where she could safely live on her own. Julie worked hard everyday to get where she is today, safely housed in her own apartment and looking forward to her future.

Leaving her abuser was extremely difficult, especially because Julie did not know where she was going to go once she walked out the door. She says, “That’s really scary, because you’re like, where do I go? And then you really, really realize there’s nowhere to go…But I just told myself that I want to live, and whatever it takes, I want to live.”

Through this difficult journey, Julie remained determined to find a safe place to call home. Julie first went to a domestic violence shelter when she left her abuser. When her time at the shelter ended, she stayed in her vehicle and with a friend who lived in an unsafe environment. Everyday she told herself that the next day would be the day she found her home. And if not that day, then she would find it the next day–until she was housed six months later.

“I definitely learned so many lessons. Walking out that door gave me pride. Not turning back gave me pride…If it wasn’t for you guys I wouldn’t be here. I’d be right in that house. Locked in a room. Wishing my situation was different,” says Julie.

Julie’s strength, determination and support from her family helped her move into a safer situation all around. Walking out that door helped Julie regain her family who were so proud to see her keep fighting for herself.

While Julie finally moved into her own apartment, her housing journey was not done yet. Julie was wrongfully evicted, with no notice or written reason, from her apartment after being there for two months. She had one month to find a new place to live even though there was no lawful reason for her to have to leave.

Thankfully, all of Julie’s hard work paid off, and she found another apartment. Before she got into her first apartment, she had submitted 24 applications to different places in her county. After she received the eviction notice, she heard back from a different apartment that they had a place for her.

Because TrueNorth had helped Julie with her deposit and first three months rent for her first apartment, Julie had started saving money in case of an emergency. With her planning, help from her family and her new apartment’s deposit from TrueNorth, Julie had everything she needed to move.

Now, Julie is settled in her new home and in an even better situation than before. Looking to the future, she says, “I definitely see myself happier, better off, and I definitely want to help some other people see that it is possible, no matter what happens in your journey.”

You can help people like Julie by becoming a member of TrueNorth Community Services. Not only will you ensure the health and safety of our neighbors today, but you will also secure our community’s well-being for years to come.

Membership means you are dedicated to our mission of inspiring hope and creating a better world. Our neighbors need you. Your membership gift will support all of TrueNorth’s programs and initiatives.

Without caring people like you, our neighbors would not have the resources or guidance necessary to build resilience, foster connections and renew hope in themselves. Make a real difference in the lives of people like Julie by committing to membership today.

Click here to become a member and help our community move forward.