SHREVEPORT, La.– For our Gold Standard series we are highlighting local volunteers who are giving back to our community.
Wanda Sonia has been volunteering for the Salvation Army of Northwest Louisiana for the past four years.
“I think the Salvation Army helps the community a lot. It help me and my children a lot,” Sonia said.
Wanda moved to Shreveport four-and-half years ago from Dallas with her three children. They faced a desperate situation where she needed food and shelter. So the Salvation Army took them in.
“They helped me and the children a lot. They were there for us. Especially giving us a place to stay because we needed a place to stay. We felt very comfortable there. We had our own room so we didn’t have to share a room. We had our own restroom. We had laundry facilities where we could wash our clothes. Food, they feed us,” Sonia said.
She said that experience changed her life.
“The care they gave us here at the Salvation Army for me and my children, it was something that was special to us. Because I also have a special needs child. They were very nice to us and accommodated us with many things,” Sonia said.
The non-profit organization helps her get back on her feet and her find permanent housing. So now she gives back as a volunteer.
“I told the Salvation Army that I would come back and volunteer, and I came back to volunteer,” she said.
Now she gets to help the organization that helped her. She runs the Family Thrift Store that provides clothing to those in need. Along with the kitchen program and Boys and Girls club. She gets to help others coming through the Salvation Army.
“It makes me feel wonderful and excited. For them helping me and I can give back my time with them. I enjoy it and I would do all back over again if I had to. And I’m going to be here as long as they need me to,” she said.
Wanda is now a mother of seven. Her efforts go beyond volunteering. She adopted two young boys who were sheltered at the Salvation Army. She’s a success story of a woman now giving back to the community.
The Salvation Army is looking for volunteers for the upcoming holiday season. Contact the organization if you would like to help.
Source: ArkLaTex News