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Green Team Volunteer Event

In 2017, the Green Team informally adopted the Stormwater Ponds and began removing Scotch Broom. After being successful with that, the Broom Busters morphed into being the Berry Blasters.  A much less satisfactory endeavor but a necessary one.  The goal went from eradication to control.  Gary Proctor and Cleve organized the latest work party.

Photo: Staunch group not afraid of getting bloodied.  Left to right:  Roy Treadway, Kit Harma , Steve Lundin, Dick Van Wagenen, Dave Milne, Gary Proctor,  Dave Morris, Cleve Pinnix, Wayne Olsen and John Erickson.

Photos: Cleve Pinnix is not all wet despite claims!  The water was only knee deep when Cleve waded across the narrow channel between the mainland and the island, in what he has dubbed “Lake Vogel”, to attack the last bastion of Scotch Broom.  Wayne, John and Dave helped ferry the plants across.

Green Team Honors Earth Day!

Panorama Green Team honored Earth Day last month by removing litter from the Chehalis Western Trail. Many volunteers participated in the clean-up. Thank you, Green Team!

Readers are Leaders

On April 11 at 7:00 am, five Panorama folks attended the annual breakfast for the South Sound Reading Foundation. The early risers were Sue Ballard, Kathy and David Forsythe, Matt Murry and Meghan Vu. The goal is to bridge the gap between schools and libraries. The majority of the funds raised by the foundation go to buy books for kids – starting at birth. Also in attendance were political, civic and school leaders. The motto for the Foundation is a good reminder for everyone to “Read 20 minutes a day.”

The keynote speaker was Claudia Castro Luna, who is the current Washington State Poet Laureate. She was born in El Salvador and came to the United States in 1981. She read to us from her memoir, The Heart Knows When, which is about her experiences escaping the civil war. She told about leaving for the airport to come to the United States and they all prayed they would make it to the airport without being killed by rebels on their trip. Her story made everyone appreciate how safe we feel in our life in Lacey.

As a former teacher and the daughter of a librarian, I believe reading is such an important skill for everyone. I love this breakfast because it reinforces my basic beliefs about the magic of reading. I learned studies have shown people have a better memory of the content of a book if they read it in hard copy, as opposed to an electronic version. I also love going to this event because it gives me an opportunity to connect with people I know from the community. All in all, I enjoy this program and going to a 7:00 am breakfast is well worth the challenge of getting up early.

Sue Ballard, Panorama resident

Community Gifts at Work

Written by Meghan Vu, Director of Philanthropy

The generosity of donors to our Office of Philanthropy has allowed us to expand the enrichment programs available to residents in our Convalescent & Rehabilitation Center (C&R). In addition to music, yoga, and massage therapies, C&R residents can now enjoy the benefits of connecting with nature as they choose plants and herbs to grow in our new garden therapy program. The indoor therapy garden and wellness program is coordinated through Eldergrow, an award-winning Seattle-based organization dedicated to bringing the joys and benefits of nature indoors.

The innovative wellness program includes a mobile, environmentally friendly sensory garden as well as fun, therapeutic gardening classes taught by expert Educators. They also provide garden maintenance and document sessions with therapeutic evaluations for each resident.

Thank you for giving generously through the Office of Philanthropy to support life-enriching programs, like Garden Therapy, throughout Panorama’s continuum of care

How to be a Smart Volunteer

Written by staff from Health Services and the Office of Philanthropy

Volunteer opportunities abound at Panorama and in our larger community. Using your time or skills to give back can be an extremely rewarding experience. Volunteering gives you the opportunity to make an impact on the lives of others, whether directly or indirectly. A phrase often heard in this community is I’m busier now than I ever was before. Having an active lifestyle is a key factor in healthy living; however, the power of doing nothing at times can be restorative and contribute to a new creative energy. Carefully consider your personal time before committing to a full schedule.

If you choose to volunteer, give your self time to experiment and find an organization or cause that can fill you up rather than create stress and drain your energy. Before you make the decision to volunteer, here are some helpful tips to consider:

Be comfortable with all the reasons you are volunteering.

There are many good reasons to volunteer, and it’s important to understand that many of them involve meeting your own needs. That’s not being selfish. Most people do altruistic things for personal reasons, and that’s okay!

Choose a cause that you’re passionate about.

Find your passion, a cause that excites you, and find a volunteer opportunity that lets you express that passion. Some enjoy volunteering in a role that fits their career skill-set while others prefer to try something new.

Find an opportunity that matches your schedule.

Volunteers spend different amounts of time in their work, but the best matches are those where supply and demand are balanced. Be certain to under commit and over deliver. Nonprofits love and need volunteers. Know how much you can participate and don’t be afraid to say ͚no if it gets overwhelming.

Make sure it’s the right fit.

There are more than 100 groups and activities at Panorama, and even more in the greater community. Like a job, your voluntary activities require the right matches. Evaluate the time you are willing to commit and select the opportunities that fit your schedule and interests.

You are never obligated to continue in a volunteer role if you no longer enjoy it or you simply have too much on your plate. You owe it to yourself and the organization to share your feelings and reduce your role, discontinue your participation, or seek out a new opportunity.

You or a loved one may find yourself dealing with health issues or other stressors, and volunteering can easily add to your stress. Please be aware of your body’s cues that you have over-committed (feeling anxious, irritable, depressed, etc.) and make any adjustments in your activities as needed to restore your energy and well-being.