May 18, 2012 > Abode Services honors volunteers
Abode Services honors volunteers
Submitted By Katie Derrig
A wide variety of guests started arriving at the Centerville Presbyterian Church gym at 5 p.m. sharp on Thursday, April 26. They came from work and school, representing churches, temples, Girl Scout troops and Rotary Clubs. Some had been present when Tri-City Homeless Coalition (now Abode Services) was founded in 1989 - others hadn't even been born yet.
What brought all these people together was one common activity: they all volunteer at Abode Services. They were at the gym that evening as part of Abode's Volunteer Appreciation Reception, an event honoring these volunteers for all they do to help homeless individuals and families. In FY11, volunteers gave a total of over 16,000 hours of service at Abode Services programs.
During the event, several volunteers gave accounts of the time they spent at Abode Services, saying that volunteering with Abode's participants had made them grateful for what they had, and for the chance to give back to their community.
Two volunteers received special awards for exemplary service. Longtime volunteer George Vlastelica was presented with a Distinguished Service Award by Andrae Macapinlac, Senior Field Representative for Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski.
Malia Vella, a Field Representative for Senator Ellen Corbett's office, presented the President's Volunteer Service Award to Gurubala Kotta. Gurubala, a junior at Mission San Jose High School, has completed over 200 hours of volunteering at Sunrise Village.
"It's always great to see our volunteers, and to have a chance to let them know how much we value all they do," said Community Outreach Director Jean Morgan, who oversees the volunteer program. "We know how busy everyone is these days, and to have these people who come to put their time and energy toward helping out really means a lot to us and everyone in our programs."
The Volunteer Appreciation Reception was sponsored by Fremont Bank Foundation.
Photo Caption: Abode Services Board Member John Smith, Community Outreach Director Jean Morgan, Andrae Macapinlac (Senior Field Representative for Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski), Board President Doug Ford, Gurubala Kotta, Malia Vella (Field Representative for Senator Ellen Corbett), George Vlastelica and Executive Director Louis Chicoine. Gurubala and George received special awards for their outstanding volunteer work.