For parents of young children, finding a place to volunteer as a family that’s both feasible and safe can seem daunting. That’s how Brooke Moser, the mother of two daughters, ages 5 and 7, often felt until a friend of hers recommended she and her husband volunteer with their girls at Thursday Night Life, The Well Community’s weekly worship service and dinner. Over a year ago, Brooke and her family showed up to serve, and they haven’t looked back since.
Volunteering as a family at Thursday Night Life is straightforward, says Brooke. Typically, her family teams up with another and the two prepare dinner together. First, it’s off to the grocery store to purchase food. (Brooke says she likes to ask Well members what they enjoy eating.) Then, they spend the evening in The Well’s cozy kitchen, chopping vegetables, doctoring sandwiches or warming soup. Often, the children are the ones who take dinner to the members.
“The girls like being able to serve the plates,” says Brooke. “The act of serving is a big deal to them. They recognize that these people really need our help.”
Brook’s daughters sense the impact they’re having. As one of them shares, “This is the nicest thing our family has ever done.”
But volunteering is more than doing something nice, according to the Moser family. It’s also about acknowledging their good fortune and teaching their children to honor their resources and share them with others. And, it’s simply about spending time together as a family.
For Well members, the presence of children in the building brings joy and sometimes calls to mind sweet memories from the past. “Children make me happy because they remind me of my childhood and the times I shared with my mom and siblings,” says Delores, a Well Community member. “They always look very happy, and they teach us about the importance of family ties”
And another member, Lydia, encourages other families to volunteer not only for herself, but for the sake of the children. “I would love for the kids to be involved in the services we have on Thursday night because I think they would get a lot out of fellowship,” she says. “I feel content when they are around.”
The Moser family plans to continue volunteering at Thursday Night Life for members like Delores and Lydia who benefit from their presence. And Brooke has taken her involvement with The Well one step further. In November, she and her husband co-chaired The Well’s annual fundraiser, Starry Night in Hollywood, which raised funds for The Well to continue serving individuals in Oak Cliff who battle extreme mental illnesses.
To families who would like to volunteer, but worry about the feasibility, commitment or safety, Brooke suggests just giving it a try. “If people want to volunteer with their families, with their kids, they can do that,” she says. “I think it can be intimidating, but just know that it’s super accessible. And it’s helpful.”
Want to serve with your family?
The Well Community is always looking for new volunteers to help serve at Thursday Night Life or our other events. And if you are a family with children, we welcome your help too! Think you might be interested? Don’t hesitate to call or email. We would love to answer your questions and find the best place for you to use your unique gifts. Contact us.