Volunteer of the Month
May 1, 2019
Why did you choose to volunteer with Eden Housing?
I was looking for an opportunity to gain some experience teaching yoga to seniors and my initial efforts did not succeed in finding anything. Then a classmate introduced me to the volunteer coordinator, Emily, who kindly took the time and effort to identify a location that was convenient for me, that also had folks interested in this kind of service at a time slot that fit into my busy schedule. Emily made the whole process easy and enjoyable.
What have you done as a volunteer? Please describe your role and what you have worked on.
I have taught yoga weekly to a lovely group of students at Eden Issei Terrace.
What have you learned through your volunteer experience? Have there been any surprises?
I have gained valuable experience teaching a group of seniors who have varying levels of strength and flexibility. It has been educational as I continue to learn how to hold the space for people with varying degrees of ability. I’ve been surprised at some of the students who are quite up in age but still retain the ability to stay with the class and keep coming back every week!
What do you like best about volunteering with Eden Housing?
The students are so very friendly and appreciative of what I have to offer. They are really a joy to work with. Grace also is a pleasure to have on board as she always calls the students who sometimes forget and she is always so supportive of my classes.
Are there any tips that you would share for someone else who is considering volunteering?
Know that the rewards are beyond what you might imagine. There is hardly any better feeling than knowing you are offering a service to people who need and appreciate it.
Tell us something we may not know about you. Any interesting facts you’d like to share about your life?
I’ve spent my whole life studying holistic medicine including shiatsu massage, herbal medicine, Ayurveda (a traditional form of holistic medicine from India that is considered a sister science of yoga), and I just completed a 1000-hour yoga therapy program. All the while I’ve been working in biotech and big pharma, helping to discover and develop life saving medicines primarily for cancer. It always seemed a little ironic that my interest is in low-tech medicine but my career has been in high tech research. I am grateful for the job that helped support my family for 3 decades and I hope to soon embark on a second career in which I can serve others in the healing arts of yoga and Ayurveda.