One of the unique things about Lasagna Love is what keeps the organization growing and thriving: it’s volunteers! In celebration of National Volunteer week, we have spoken with a few of our volunteers across the country who are helping to spread kindness in their communities, in many different ways.
Lasagna Love is supported by volunteers in several different roles and positions. Whether you are a Lasagna Chef, a Regional Director, or a member of the Customer Support Team – you are an integral piece of the organization. Volunteers are what truly help to shape and frame an organization like Lasagna Love.
Imagine the process of building a house. A house provides shelter, support, and comfort to those inside it – much like Lasagna Love provides kindness and support to families in need. In order for your house to continue providing, the house itself needs to be structurally sound and supported. Lasagna Love volunteers make up these important needs…
The foundation: to support and provide balance
The walls: to frame and provide shape
The roof: to shelter and protect
Without one of these integral pieces, your house – or organization – cannot thrive the way it should. At Lasagna Love, we are fortunate to have so many volunteers who are willing to contribute their time and skills to support the needs of the organization…and in turn, support the communities around them.
Lynn H. wears a few hats at Lasagna Love. First and foremost, she is a Lasagna Chef based in Georgia. Lynn remembers the exact date that she learned about Lasagna Love while watching the Today Show. It was September 28, 2020.
“I can tell you the date because honestly it changed my life,” Lynn explained. She saw Lasagna Love’s founder, Rhiannon on the Today Show and heard the story of Lasagna Love and how it came to be. Watching the segment, Lynn felt an immediate connection to the organization. Lynn and her husband are retired and they had both recently relocated to a new town to be closer to one of their children. Then, all of the sudden, the pandemic hit and they were both unable to see their kids, or anyone at all.
Like it has been for many of us across the country, it was an extremely isolating time for Lynn and her husband. To occupy some of their time, they started doing a lot of cooking and a lot of baking. When Lynn saw the Lasagna Love story on the Today Show, she realized,
“Oh my God, that is what I need to do!”
After signing up immediately to become a Lasagna Chef, Lynn delivered a few lasagnas to families in her area, and she continued to increase her driving radius and the number of families that she was able to support. Even with making these increases to her schedule, Lynn was getting few matches and realized that this was an opportunity for her to help.
Through her personal experience having few matches, Lynn decided to expand her volunteerism to become an Outreach Leader in her state. She helps to support her Regional Leaders in Georgia by brainstorming and executing new ways to find more Lasagna Chefs and more families in need. Due to the pandemic, most of the outreach has taken place online or over the phone, reaching out on Facebook groups, contacting PTA organizations, churches, schools – individuals who might want to help support Lasagna Love and spread awareness about its mission.
As Lynn continued her roles as a Lasagna Chef and Outreach Leader, yet another opportunity was presented to her. Rhiannon was seeking volunteer help to support the emailed questions that are submitted through the website from many Lasagna Love volunteers, Lynn decided that she had the time and passion to help and decided to take on another role. This has been a great learning experience for Lynn too, learning the ins and outs of Zoom, email platforms, and communicating with volunteers nationwide who are reaching out for help.
“Lasagna love has given my life a really meaningful focus. More so than any other group that I’ve volunteered for. I never wanted to get this involved in any of the other things I’ve done.”
Lynn’s passion for Lasagna Love is evident in her willingness to help and to go above and beyond. When asked what advice she would like to share to new volunteers, she had an important word of wisdom:
“First and foremost, you should have a passion for whatever it is you are volunteering for. Volunteer because you believe it can help someone. Honestly, I don’t think about the thank yous. I’m doing this because it feels good for me. If you feel good about it, you’ll want to continue and do more.”
Volunteers are the foundation, the walls, and the roof of Lasagna Love. They’ve helped support and grow this organization into what it is today. The dedication from each volunteer – no matter what their role – provides support and allows it to flourish.
One of the last questions that we had for Lynn was about her volunteer experiences throughout her life. We ask, could you name a volunteer opportunity that had a profound or memorable impact on your life?
Lynn replied with confidence, “It’s Lasagna Love.”