Volunteers like Stacy Snyder know that when it comes to showing your inner philanthropist, simply signing a check is not enough.
“When I moved back to Chicago, I wanted to reengage myself,” she says. “I felt like I had been out of touch with the LGBTQ community for the last 10 years of my life.”
Volunteerism is at the heart of the story of the Center on Halsted. For over 40 years, volunteers have been core to the services that the Center has provided to the LGBTQ community. In fact, the organization operated with volunteers exclusively for over a decade, hiring its first part-time staff person in 1984. Its beginnings as a volunteer-run information clearinghouse in 1973 have led the way to becoming the largest LGBTQ social service organization in the Midwest today. Stacy is one of 400 volunteers at Center on Halsted.
[pullquote]Professional finance writer Stacy Snyder supports LGBTQ youth through financial literacy classes at @CenteronHalsted[/pullquote]
As a professional writer on personal finance, Stacy believes that sharing her knowledge about financial literacy with youth is her most rewarding asset to give back to the LGBTQ community.
According to Stacy, many “young people don’t have any exposure to the ABCs of personal finance, either through schooling or parental upbringing. I thought, why not help teach a class to the young people about financial literacy. In this way, I get to marry my interests with the needs of Center on Halsted to make an impact.”
The Center could not have made an everlasting mark on Chicago’s LGBTQ community without volunteers like Stacy. She claims that role models like Laverne Cox have served as a source of inspiration. “A couple of month ago I heard Laverne Cox say that it wasn’t just enough to give money to change the world we live in for the better, but rather to give our time and immerse ourselves with those around us who need help the most.”
Stacy’s involvement in youth programs has brought out her spirit of goodwill towards others. She explains, “Since starting at Center on Halsted, I feel like I’m up-to-date with the LGBTQ community. I used to have this hole in my life, and volunteering at Center on Halsted has filled that void.”