Andy Perez (Volunteer)

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Delivering food as part of the Center’s Senior Angels program and working in the new Pride Pantry has helped me cope with the COVID-19 pandemic and with the uncertainty of unemployment. As a freelance publicist, all my clients—mainly entertainment, leisure, and retail—have disappeared. Volunteering has been a productive way to spend my days.

I have been so impressed with how quickly the Center got these food programs up and running. It’s a really great way to get clients to be part of community and to know that somebody gives a damn. Folks are so grateful to receive the food and so happy to see us.

This week I delivered two bags of groceries to a man who had never called anywhere before to get help. By his body language, I could see that he had shame about it with the weight of the pandemic upon his shoulders. We talked about it, and it was such a relief to him that somebody came and brought him things. Now he knows he can call anytime.

It was all I could do to not burst into tears.

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Hometown: Chicago

Year Started at Center: 2014

Volunteer Position: Senior Services/LifeWorks
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