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Volunteer Appreciation Month: Meet Stephanie!

April showers bring...Volunteer Appreciation Month and a chance to celebrate DOROT's incredible volunteer community!

Stephanie Wykstra has been volunteering with DOROT since 2019. Get to know Stephanie below:

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Stephanie: I’m a freelance writer and after living in NYC for about ten years, recently moved to Westchester County with my family.

How did you first get involved with DOROT?

Stephanie: I started volunteering with DOROT when I lived in the Upper West Side, as part of the technology coaching program. My grandmother was a New Yorker for many decades and after she passed away, I wanted the opportunity to visit with another older person in the city. After that I continued volunteering with the Legacy Projects.

Why did you choose to be a Legacy Project volunteer?

Stephanie: I enjoy listening to people, asking questions, and writing, so I was drawn to helping people write their life stories.

What is one of your favorite moments from your experience as a DOROT volunteer?

Stephanie: I have been paired with three different people, and each time, it's been a wonderful experience. We have weekly conversations for a couple of months, and then we put together an essay interspersed with photos telling their life story (or at least parts of it, since it's an essay and not a full-length biography!) DOROT then sends copies of the essay to the person, and they share it as they like with family and friends. I have especially loved hearing memories of what it was like to live in NYC at different points in time.

What have you learned from volunteering with the DOROT community?

Stephanie: There are such great opportunities to meet new people and to enjoy conversations that we likely wouldn't otherwise have had.

What would you say to someone else who was deciding whether to become a Legacy Project volunteer at DOROT?

Stephanie: It's a wonderful experience and I'd encourage anyone who is interested to get involved! Thanks to DOROT staff for facilitating such meaningful connections and projects.