Volunteer Stories – Charissa Stowers

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Today, we celebrate Charissa Stowers! Charissa has volunteered in-office to help us get set up in our new offices. She is well versed in the importance of Trauma-Informed Care and shares her passion with others.

1.  Please tell us a little about yourself! What is your name, where are you from, and how did you become familiar with Fostering Hope Austin and its mission?  

My name is Charissa Stowers, a native Texan born in Austin. I became familiar with Fostering Hope through Meghann Presley and our church, Grace + Peace Austin. 

2.  Why did you start volunteering with Fostering Hope Austin? How has your volunteer work with us translated into you helping others?  

I have only volunteered once, but I am really glad to have been able to help organize the supply closet when Fostering Hope Austin moved to their new office! It’s hard to make time to volunteer as a mom and working full time, so it was awesome to work with a place that could be flexible with my schedule as well. 

3. Why do you keep volunteering with Fostering Hope Austin?  
I don’t think this counts for me yet – I’ve only volunteered once, but more to come! 

4.  Has volunteering with us positively impacted your life? If so, please tell us how!  
Yes! I was able to share about Fostering Hope Austin with teammates at work and friends. It opened up good conversations about why fostering and adoption are important to me, as well as to our community. 

5.  Why do you think it’s important for people to volunteer their time to support those in the fostering or adoption space? Any practical tips for those who want to get involved helping others but aren’t sure how to get started? 

There’s so much potential for burnout for people who are living and working in this space – when I found margin, I wanted to be able to pitch in to support where I could. I think an important step in volunteering is to find where you might have time, and reach out asking where you can help in that amount of time. I only had a few hours on a Friday, and FH found work for me to do! My company is awesome in that we get 40 hours of volunteer time off each year, so I was able to put work on the back burner in the middle of the day to pitch in at Fostering Hope. 

Thank you Claire for volunteering and sharing your passion for fostering and adoption with others!