It’s always good to start off on a positive note, so I have a praise item to share. During the month of March two more regular volunteers joined our ranks, working with small animals and creepy crawly critters. In addition, we had one new casual volunteer show up for a few hours of work. We praise God for all who give of their time to help out here at CVYR.

Through a contact at the Parkside Chapel missions conference, we met D’Ann Reimer, the Volunteer Coordinator at Visalia Rescue Mission. Aaron and I met with her one afternoon. We talked about how VRM’s volunteer program works and got lots of good input. We will be adopting and adapting some of their ideas. The big takeaway for me was their emphasis on the importance of each individual volunteer. It’s not that I didn’t recognize the importance of volunteers, but rather that I was able to see the tools they use to emphasize each volunteer. So watch for changes in the way we do things around here!

Speaking of ways to treat people, let’s take a look at my wife. Yes, really. Karen directs the Resource program at Liberty School in Tulare. At the beginning of each school year she puts a questionnaire in each staff member’s mailbox. It asks about the person’s favorite color, candy, snacks, etc. Then she publishes all the responses she receives and distributes a copy to all who participated. Throughout the school year the staff occasionally surprises each other with a small remembrance gift. The idea works wonders! We may have to adapt this concept here at CVYR as well.

Hmmm, new volunteer experiences… On Friday the 13th (hmmm again) I’ve volunteered to help shear the two alpacas and the sheep here at CVYR. Let’s see – I spent a week on a sheep station in Australia in 1969. Does that count as experience? We’ll see how that all turns out!

Finally, I want to again share the need for summer volunteers. There will be a lot of building, renovating, and general ranch work that needs to be done. If God grants you any time to serve from June to August, please contact me at gene@cvyr.org or click here to fill out a volunteer questionnaire.

–Gene Richert, Volunteer Coordinator