How Giving Back is Good for Your Body and Soul
Lorrie Reynolds, Director, Wellness Client Accounts, Worksite Wellness
Years on the Blue Crew Advisory Board: 3
Lorrie Reynolds has more than 20 years’ experience helping our customers empower their employees to live a healthier lifestyle.
So it’s not surprising that as a Blue Crew volunteer, she especially enjoys projects that give volunteers the chance to get outside and get moving, because of the positive effect it can have on both our emotional and physical well-being.
But as she’s learned over the years, volunteering outdoors comes with a few challenges.
Lorrie’s first experience as a Blue Crew volunteer was at the Legs Against Arms 5K race — in hurricane-force winds and torrential rain.
“Given the conditions, I thought people wouldn’t show up,” she says, “but what was so inspiring was that people not only showed up, they showed up with enthusiasm.”
Helping a Child in Need to Thrive
Despite being nearly blown sideways and soaked to the skin, Lorrie was so energized that she knew she didn’t want her first volunteer experience to be her last.
She gives her time to a variety of Blue Crew projects in addition to serving on the advisory board but is especially passionate about working with organizations that support youth and families and local preservation efforts.
One that’s closest to her heart is Cradles to Crayons, which provides children from birth through age 12 who are homeless or in low-income situations with essential items they need to thrive.
Volunteers working with Cradles to Crayons assemble packages for a child based on age and gender. “You pull together a week’s worth of items a child needs, like clothes and toys,” Lorrie says. “By the time the experience is over, you feel like you know each child personally and you’ve touched his or her life, even though you’ve never met.”
Volunteering is a Microburst of Positivity in Your Busy Day
This year Lorrie led Blue Crew projects to support the Newlin Grist Mill and Park — which features twelve historic structures and more than eight miles of hiking trails in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania — combining her love of preservation and the outdoors.
“When you volunteer, your stress goes away for that one moment in time. It’s a microburst of positivity in your busy day. You can put away your smartphone and just interact with people!”
She says being out of their business clothes and in Blue Crew T-shirts makes volunteers feel connected, regardless of their work titles or responsibilities.
And she emphasizes that volunteering helps you use your skills and abilities to make a project successful, but it often challenges you to step out of your comfort zone and learn new ones.
As a manager, she’s encouraged her staff to volunteer as a personal development goal, and encourages anyone to make time to volunteer in their community.
“The energy you give out, you get back.”