My name is Ally Ledoux and I am a volunteer for the food shelf at the Haven. It is a wonderful place, helping so many people in so many ways.
But, I would like to tell you about my experience at the Haven. My husband, Bill and I moved to Wilder almost two years ago from the Burlington, VT area. My husband worked down there while I continued working as a music teacher in Charlotte, VT. Then my world crashed down. I found that I have a malignant brain tumor. This was not part of my plan. In one day, my career was over, but I knew that something good would happen. I am a positive person and a dedicated worker and I hoped that my life would take a different path.
I had surgery in Boston, and recuperated in Wilder until I had a serious seizure. I was hospitalized for a month in Burlington and at Dartmouth-Hitchcock. It was a difficult time, but finally, I was home!
After several months of recuperating, I needed something to do. My husband and I went to visit the Upper Valley Haven in hopes that we could find a place where we could make a difference by volunteering.
When I met Laura, the volunteer coordinator at the Haven, I was taken by her gentle demeanor and immediately knew she would understand my situation. You see, word-finding, problems with memory and other such things could be difficult for me. Laura thought that I could be a food shelf volunteer and that I would be enveloped by the Haven staff. The people there are wonderful. They check in with me and make sure that everything is fine. They remind me to take my pills! We laugh and work hard. If I didn’t have the Haven and the support it offers, my quality of life would decrease.
“As you give so you receive” perhaps can be written accurately here. I give my time as a volunteer in spite of a difficult medical situation. The Haven supports me with friendship, meals after my hospitalization and an opportunity to work in the community.
Ally has been volunteering at the Haven for more than 6 months.
The Haven Through 40 Years
The Haven will commemorate its four decades of service to the region by releasing 40 stories of people, events, ideas, and services fundamental to our mission. We will be releasing these stories weekly, so check back often.