Every day in Austin, we’re working to ensure each child has access to high-quality education, every family has the tools they need to be financially stable, and health and human services are readily available for all.
Our middle school VPL program is full of outstanding volunteers! You may have read earlier this week about Cristian Dominguez from Webb Middle School — today we are highlighting another VPL volunteer, Caroline Trang, in honor of National Volunteer Week.
Caroline is a 7th grader at Decker Middle School, one of the three middle schools served by our Middle School Matters program. This year was Caroline’s first year in the VPL program, and she had the best attendance of any student in the program and was a leader of Decker’s Literacy Night activity booth. Other projects Caroline and her team have taken on include making book posters, sorting books for donation, volunteering in the school library and creating bookmarks with literacy tips for other students.
Young Leaders Society (YLS) Executive Member, Frances Jordan, serves as the YLS Campus Captain of Decker Middle School and has worked closely with Caroline this past year. Frances not only volunteers through YLS, but also serves as a member of UWATX’s volunteer Resource Development Committee and helps our fundraising team find new business and make important decisions. Frances and Caroline sat down together and chatted about their involvement and volunteer experiences with UWATX:
Frances: Why do you volunteer through the VPL program?
Caroline: My friend Helen made me come at first, but it turned out to be so fun! I like to help others.
Frances:What are your favorite types of volunteer activities?
Caroline: Helping with cleaning up the community, presenting to groups, and giving gifts to those in need.
Frances: Describe any volunteer experience you have had that has been helpful to you in other parts of your life (such as school)?
Caroline: Leading the Literacy Night activities was important to help other kids know the importance of reading.
Frances: Who or what influenced you to begin volunteering?
Caroline: My friend Helen was a big influence on me. I volunteer with her at VPL every week.
Frances: What makes Austin greater?
Caroline: The people who live here are very connected but still diverse. Also, the beautiful environment with nice green spaces makes it a great place to live.
Caroline: How long have you been involved with United Way and in what capacities?
Frances: I’ve been engaged for about two years, mostly through YLS. I am currently the Campus Captain for Decker Middle School for YLS.
Caroline: What is your favorite part of being a mentor for VPL students?
Frances: I like to interact with the students and learn from them. It’s super fun!
Caroline: Why do you believe it is important to volunteer as an adult?
Frances: When you volunteer as an adult, you have more knowledge to share with others. Giving back and lending a hand are important to me.
Caroline: Why do you gain from your volunteer work?
Caroline: What makes Austin greater?
Frances: The ability to give back in a different ways and having lots of opportunities to make a difference. The people in Austin have lots of passion for this city!