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Adult Volunteer Spotlight: Robyn & Chris Parker

We feel it is vital to invest in our community; the best way to do this is to focus on our youth.

Hands4Hope provides the platform on which youth can grow and make an impact. Through

Hands4Hope’s programs, school-based clubs, and volunteer opportunities, the youth develop the

necessary skills to become leaders, to work together as a team, to accomplish projects, and

embrace the meaning of community. They see how their work makes a difference in many

people’s lives.

You were essential in helping bring a Hands4Hope Youth Center to Placerville in July 2021.

Please share your thoughts on the new expansion of the youth center and what it means for

the youth and the community.

The Placerville Hands4Hope Youth Center is utilized for many functions, and the possibility of expanding the current space is exciting! Our community will benefit significantly from this expansion in many different ways. It will allow the Emergency Food Pantry to create an even more ideal “shopping” experience for the families it serves and provide additional storage for food items. The

expansion will allow ASPIRE Outfitters to offer a boutique for youth in need to “shop” for clothing

and shoes. There are now established Hands4Hope School Clubs on 10 school campuses in El Dorado County (or in Placerville) and the number of Hands4Hope youth is increasing. The youth collect and distribute many items during their drives, such as nonperishable food items, toiletries, clothing, and school supplies. Additional space is needed to inventory and store these items pending distribution. The expansion will also provide meeting rooms to other organizations providing youth support.

What are some of the skills you see Hands4Hope youth learning that will be most valuable as they grow personally and professionally?

In our involvement with Hands4Hope youth, not only in the Emergency Food Pantry but volunteering for other events, we see the “can do” attitude of the youth. They have so much energy and

passion for helping out in the community. Skills they are learning that will carry over into their adult life include learning to communicate through writing and presenting speeches, writing thank you notes, listening skills, creating, planning, and following through with projects, learning budgets, learning to work as a team, and learning management skills.

What are some of your favorite memories from all your experiences with Hands4Hope?

Our primary volunteer responsibility is with the Hands4Hope Emergency Food Pantry. We love to see the faces light up of the children who come to the pantry with their parents and help “shop” for food. They love picking out fresh vegetables and fruit. We also love the hugs and many thanks from the parents knowing they can depend on nutritious food items at the pantry.

We volunteered alongside youth on a Caldor Fire distribution. Watching them actively interact with people by helping to pick out clothing, finding the right sizes, and answering questions was wonderful. They were professional, kind, and sensitive to the situation these people were


We recently received a phone call from a Hands4Hope alumni thanking us for our volunteer efforts. In our conversation she shared with me that she is currently in medical school. Even after “graduating” from Hands4Hope and working her way through college, she still continues to come back and participate with the nonprofit. Being involved with Hands4Hope has made a huge impact on her life.

Working together as volunteers affords us the unique opportunity to watch these incredible youth grow to become successful and productive members of society and allows us the opportunity to support our community at the same time.


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