Daily Point of Light # 2477 Aug 4, 2003

Rachael Walker has been volunteering for Hospice of Volusia/Flagler for more than a year. She spends 20 hours a month volunteering during her school year, and 40 hours during her summer vacation. Rachael, at only 13 years old, has proven to be one of the finest customer-service oriented volunteers working at Treasures of the Heart Resale Shop in Orange City, the Hospice of Volusia/Flagler resale store.

From helping at the register, assisting in bagging and wrapping purchases, to answering customer questions, Rachel performs each task with a smile and a kind heart. Customers have often commented on Rachael’s maturity and professional manner. When hospice caregivers or any customer who has had a Hospice experience comes into the store, Rachael conscientiously extends the Hospice spirit to them, by taking the time to listen to their experiences and empathizing with their loss. She receives donated items with care and respect, making sure that the donor realizes how much their gift is appreciated by the Hospice organization. Rachael also makes certain that the store is a neat, attractive place to shop and is never idle. She always fills her time with extra projects, such as weeding out the older merchandise or straightening racks and shelves.

Although Rachael at 13 is a very young volunteer, she has made a very mature statement in volunteering for Hospice of Volusia/Flagler. Rachael loves the resale shop, but is also interested in volunteering in the care center, working with patients and their families. She hopes to one day be able to volunteer in the care center of West Volusia and has already made the commitment to volunteer in the Port Orange facility over her summer break.

Rachael has a positive outlook and a desire to serve her community. She is a determined young woman who humbly believes that goodness is meant to be shared. She could easily have let personal circumstances keep her from being positive. She has seen, firsthand, the effects of drug addiction. Her mother is incarcerated at this time for drug use. Her 4-year-old brother was born addicted to drugs due to his mother’s drug abuse during pregnancy. Rachael lives with her father and grandmother and helps them as best as she is able.

With wisdom far beyond her years and a kind, gentle, loving heart, Rachael Walker has already triumphed over adversity and with her determination, will continue to grow and achieve her goals. She has the fortitude to excel and is a gift to her community. She is a shining example of showing courage and conviction through volunteer service.