What inspired you to volunteer your time?
“A few years ago, my family and I moved homes and we were looking for a place to donate some furniture. After a quick search on the internet, we discovered a place called Furniture Bank. Here was a solution in which we knew our donation would be put to good use. Two years ago, when my schedule allowed me to volunteer some time in my week to a charity, the first place I thought of was Furniture Bank.”
Why Furniture Bank?
“For me, Furniture Bank is one of the most important charities for helping people live with dignity. It is not always the case that a person who is immigrating from another country, or a person who is fleeing an abusive situation or a person who was formerly homeless can afford to furnish their new home. Getting started in a new life can be a great challenge. However, they can come into the Furniture Bank and can choose furniture to fill their whole house for a delivery fee of $100-$200. When a client visits Furniture Bank, they most often tell me they have nothing; which means they and their children (!) are sleeping on the floor, eating on the floor, trying to study on the floor surrounded by blank walls and empty spaces. The thought of this emptiness alone is enough to churn my stomach. When we have finished our appointment and we are reviewing a client’s order, it fills me with a sense of relief and happiness knowing that in 2 days, these people in front me will no longer be sleeping on the floor or eating their meals on the floor. They can gather around their new dinner table and enjoy a family meal. Their children can sit at a desk and learn. They can all gather on their new sofa and relax together. All of these things that most people take for granted. Once they have a house filled with furniture, they can move onto the next phase of living their new life.”
What does home mean to you?
“A home is a safe place to be with your family and friends. A home is a place to eat, sleep, gather together or a place to be a sanctuary from the outside world. Having the very basic need of furniture turns a house into a home.”