Today for our volunteer spotlight, we chatted with Liz Sims, our volunteer coordinator, who is, herself, a volunteer, about her involvement with Magdalene Serenity House!
Tell us about you!
I’m Liz and I’m the volunteer volunteer coordinator at Magdalene Serenity House! I grew up in Mountain View, Arkansas and graduated from the UA with a degree in social work in 2014. I worked for 5 years at Life Styles in Fayetteville, which serves people who have disabilities. I’ve done a lot of work with the homeless, including data collection for the Point in Time census in NWA, and the LGBTQ community. I resigned from Life Styles to spend time with my son and partner.
What inspired you to get involved with MSH?
I was at an event last summer and someone from St. Paul’s was speaking about MSH and it sounded awesome. I was really interested and so I got her number and she hooked me up with our program director.
I’ve always been interested in rehabilitation. When I worked at Life Styles, their goal was integrating the people they serve into the community. Overall, I am interested in integration and rehabilitation and MSH sounded like a combination of both. I was really drawn to the mission of Magdalene.
What do you want new volunteers to know about MSH?
I want them to know about the heart of Magdalene Serenity House. I want people to ask questions, be open, and know that, yes, the residents are here for trauma and some difficulties in their pasts, but the house is full of laughter and fun and good conversations and positive vibes.
What does #lovehealsnwa mean to you?
It means community. I have been amazed at the way so many volunteers and people in our community have come together to get Magdalene up and running and who continue, week after week, to support the residents and the organization.
What volunteer needs does Magdalene Serenity House currently have?
We need drivers. Our ladies need to be driven to appointments, meetings, etc. Driving is a great way to get to know our residents. You get a lot of one-on-one time and it’s a wonderful way to connect.
We also need weekend volunteers to be on-call. The role of the weekend volunteer is to check in at the house twice a day, monitor family visitations, and transport the residents to any activities that day. It’s a great way to be of service and allows you to truly experience Magdalene's Mission in action.
What most inspires you about MSH?
The residents and their persistence, their strength. I’m blown away by their stories. I never hear them complain. They truly love to be here. Their drive and ambition towards recovery is inspirational.
What are your passions?
As a social worker, I am passionate about people, our community, and advocacy.
Interested in being a Magdalene Serenity House volunteer? You can find our volunteer application here!