National Volunteer Week 2019: Thank You for Serving!

Posted by Linda Klein, OTR, CHT on 04/08/2019

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'” 
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

As I reflect on volunteerism at the start of National Volunteer Week (April 7-13, 2019), I am reminded that so many ASHT members volunteer in their communities — in shelters for the homeless or victims of domestic abuse, animal shelters, overseas missions in developing countries or simply helping a neighbor shovel their walkway. These volunteers, giving freely of their time, are what binds communities together.

According to Arden Brummell, author of The Value of Volunteering, “Volunteering is helping, not hiring; giving, not taking; contributing, not counting.” I applaud each and every ASHT member who volunteers in any way. I know those who volunteer would say what they give is less than what they gain from their experiences. Thank you for making an impact on the world around us.

I especially want to recognize our members who volunteer within ASHT. We have more than 100 members who volunteer on the society's Board of Directors, divisions, committees, ASHT Times magazine and other valuable projects, sharing their skills and expertise to further the field of hand and upper extremity therapy. Having been an ASHT volunteer since 2008, I recognize the intrinsic value of volunteering, how it creates a private sense of accomplishment and reward to give back our field.

“I am only one, but I am one.I cannot do everything, but I can do something;
and I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do.” 
– Edward Everett Hale

In an effort to expand our volunteer opportunities, ASHT will soon launch a volunteer portal to help facilitate the volunteer process and make it even easier for you to learn about new opportunities that fit your interests. Our goal is that more members will be able to take advantage of volunteer opportunities — including "microvolunteering" for those with limited time or who just want to get started. Large or small, every contribution counts.

ASHT would not be in existence without volunteers. It is our volunteers who have the vision for the future of hand and upper extremity therapy and the expertise to teach, mentor, write, perform research and develop strategic plans, goals and programs to expand members’ knowledge and skills. As ASHT President, I am humbled to see the hours and passion our volunteers put into the organization with the ultimate goal of providing the best care for our patients. Thank you to each and every one of you from the bottom of my heart!

Linda Klein, OTR, CHT
2018-2019 ASHT President

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”
– Anne Frank