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At last, a much-needed injection of new blood

by Juliet Rostowsky and Lola Katz

Over several months, we, the co-coordinators of ESRA'S Volunteer Division were approached by a whole new cadre of volunteers offering their time and skills. Most of them were retired and wanted to give something back to society. But among them were younger people still practicing their professions, yet willing to give of their professional know-how to help ESRA. We were very excited at the prospect of involving them in our activities and projects.

To facilitate this process, we set up a meeting of ten potential volunteers on a morning in late June. We were fortunate in having the vice-chairperson, Baruch Tanaman, the head of projects, Nina Zuck, and the executive director, Yonit Gurfinkel, at the meeting.

Each participant had been asked in advance to prepare a short bio to present to the group. Their range of qualifications, experience and skills was extremely impressive. Among them were a computer engineer, an electrical engineer, an educationist, a young lawyer, a psychologist with a specialty in psychoanalysis and experience in conducting support groups, a public relations practitioner, a specialist in hi-tech marketing, social media management and strategic planning, one with high level secretarial and administrative skills, and a retired director of public companies. Several of the participants had qualifications and experience in more than one of these fields, some as esoteric as historical linguistics and the making of anthropomorphic maps.

After hearing from the volunteers, each of the ESRA representatives gave a short introduction about their role in the organization. Yonit made suggestions about where some of the potential volunteers could be utilized in our projects and administrative areas and we will be meeting and discussing their roles with them.

It was stressed that the optimum role in volunteering is not always evident instantly, or even quickly, and if the initial job or task turns out to be not entirely suitable, there are many other options available.

We also indicated that ESRA is open to new ideas about activities as well as the expansion of the existing ones. The level of enthusiasm, energy and interaction was high and the prospects look exciting indeed.

We look forward to welcoming these new volunteers and having them add to the considerable skills and expertise already operating in ESRA. 



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Friday, 23 February 2024

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