Volunteer Profile: Jesus Valencia
Jesus Valencia is a student who's been volunteering at the McCormick Y since last fall. For National Volunteer Week, we caught up with him and talked about how and why he gives back to the community.
What first attracted you to volunteer with the Y?
I am currently a Master of Public Health Student at UIC and I felt the Y would be a great way to get experience in my field.
What is your volunteer role?
Currently, I assist with the food experience class that is given to head start children at the Y. I am also going to teach a mindfulness cooking class to members of the Y.
Why do you choose to volunteer?
I have always wanted to make a contribution to my city in one way or another. I felt by volunteering, I could do just that and still have enough time to focus on school.
What is your favorite thing about the Y?
I love that the Y is continuously trying to help the community through hosting events like produce day and fun events held on Halloween and other holidays. Additionally, they act as advocates for the community through collaborations with other organizations.
What makes your Y special to your community?
The connections it has makes it operate more smoothly. For example, we always get volunteers from Teen Challenge, which is only a few blocks away, on Produce Day. They are always willing to work hard and help out as much as possible.
I enjoy watching and playing any type of sports, especially soccer. I also enjoy running and overall staying physically active. I am very big on family. Therefore, anytime I get a chance to, I will spend time with them.
What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
My favorite ice cream flavor is sherbet, but you can never go wrong with vanilla.
What motto do you live by?
Be the change you wish to see in the world.