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Life of an Intern - Involuntarily Invaluable

Wow, I wonder if the convoluted nature of this post title was worth the cleverness of it's wordplay.  I'll let the readers be the judge.  So, this last week Rochester Downtown Alliance held it's annual volunteer appreciation picnic, which I had the honor to help coordinate.  The staff and I hand wrote, addressed and sent out over 70 thank-you cards and invitations.  That's pretty sweet.  I've had a chance to work with many of our volunteers through Thursdays on First and 3rd, but I forget sometimes that ToF is not the only big event RDA organizes over the year, and the ToF volunteers aren't the only ones helping to make RDA events a success.  It's really a neat thing to see community members of all ages and walks of life taking an interest in their community and working together to make it a brighter, more beautiful place. 

Basically, this is a short post to give a big thanks to all of our volunteers, and volunteers in general. ¶ As I have mentioned before, I also intern with C4 and I work with the nonprofit, Rochester Youth Baseball Association.  Coincidentally, both RDA and RYBA had their appreciation dinners in the same week! So much good food... But that's beside the point.  What I'm really trying to say is there are so many programs, events, and even total organizations that simply could not exist without the help of dedicated individuals to take pride in serving with their time, energy and ideas.  I truly hope all of our volunteers leave with a positive impression of the organization they are giving their time to, and they consider helping us out again in the future.  Needless to say, your commitment is greatly appreciated, and there is literally no way we could function at our current level without your help.

Its strange to say, (mainly because I don't want to think about leaving), but I'm really going to miss all the downtown connections I've made when this internship is over.  I have become way more involved in the community of Rochester this summer, and it's been an immensely rewarding way to spend time. Thanks to RDA, I became involved with C4 and also volunteered for the Gus Macker basketball tournament at the YMCA this past weekend.  I met even more awesome people and had a blast watching some 3v3 basketball.  Weekend well spent.  If you take anything away from this post, I hope it is this: Your time is valuable.  Make sure you are spending it on meaningful things with people who make you happy and make you a better person.  Thanks for making me a better me, Rochester!

With improvement,

Raquel Grad


PS, if you're now inspired to volunteer in the community, here are some resources.  A quick google search will show that there are many more, but this should get you started :)

Rochester Downtown Alliance


Rochester Youth Baseball Association

Mayo Clinic


Paws and Claws

Boys and Girls Club

United Way