We Appreciate Our Mountain Volunteers

The Mountain’s “Volunteers of Note”

This is a photo of two of The Mountain’s Volunteers of Note, Harriet Lawrence and Charlene Fitzgerald. Both were onsite in March, actively engage in a variety of tasks, in the office and around the site.
Here is a little bit more of the stories about Charlene’s and Harriet’s connections and involvements with The Mountain.
From Harriet:

“This is my fifteenth year of volunteering at The Mountain, usually about two to four months per year, long enough to enjoy watching first-time guests react to ‘the magic of The Mountain’ and become returnees, watching children grow into young adults carrying on our values, and of course watching The Mountain itself grow and evolve, and feeling the satisfaction of participation in that growth, making a contribution to help the magic continue into the future.

It’s a great gig: long-term volunteers work five days a week, but earn seven days room and board, so have two days off to explore the area.  You don’t have to volunteer for that long, however — you can come work for just a few days and still be thanked with meals and a bed during your stay, and know that you too are helping ensure that The Mountain endures.

 

“Several years ago, I came to The Mountain for an Elderhostel (now Road Scholars) program.  At the end of those five days, not only was I enamored with Appalachian history, but I didn’t want to leave The Mountain.  Luckily for me I met with Julia Jamieson who encouraged me to return as a volunteer.  A volunteer who would drive from Ohio?  Yikes!  Yet, I did return many many times…enough  to become a Volunteer of Note.  

Working in the office, housekeeping, the kitchen, and acting several times as program host did nothing but strengthen the wonderful feeling I had my very first time standing on the actual mountain top.  Even after an absence of a few years, I recently returned to the welcoming arms of old friends, new staff and a sense that I have one again come home. That feeling,  that comfort, that joy, that belief in the innate goodness of The Mountain and what it stands for is why I volunteer..and why I drive from Ohio to do so!”

Introducing Resident Volunteer Bob Fox

“I first came to The Mountain in 2001 as a participant in the Leadership School for Religious Educators and was invited back to be on LSRE Faculty the following year. On my arrival I was struck, as is everyone, by the physical beauty of the place. The natural setting is gorgeous, ever changing, and provides serenity. More than that was the feeling that every single one of the people working here cares about every person who comes here–whether as part of a group or as an individual.
The mission and programs at The Mountain fit perfectly with the personal calling that led me to become a volunteer youth adviser for many years and then a Director of Religious Education. The combination of setting, people, programs, and a loving atmosphere, while not unique in this world, are treasures to be appreciated when found. I hope to be here helping for a long time.”