September Volunteer of the Month – Nicoletta Salvatore
Meet our volunteers! Each month, we highlight a stand-out volunteer (or two) and how they support families. For September, meet Nicoletta Salvatore, a member of our Teen Advisory Council, who has volunteered her talents for more than two years.
- How long have you volunteered with us?
I started volunteering in August 2018 when I was nominated by my school to participate in the Teen Advisory Council (TAC) at the Ronald McDonald House near Advocate Children’s Hospital.I hadn’t heard about Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana (RMHC-CNI) until I was nominated! But I’ve always loved volunteering so when I got the TAC application and learned about how you help families I decided to get involved. That was more than two years ago now, and I really enjoyed my time as a TAC member.
- Where or how do you usually volunteer, and what do you typically do?
I spent two years as a TAC member at the RMH near Advocate. This required volunteering at the House for four hours every month, but I loved it so much that I would often help out for eight to 12 hours at a time. Needless to say, I’ve acquired quite a few hours over the years, and I’ve done everything from answering phones and organizing storage closets, to sorting toiletry kits and helping meal groups.In addition to working around the House, I also volunteered for Rolling for Ronald and Running for Hope [two annual fundraising events]. I’ve always been happy to help out however I can, and in the days leading up to an event I’d run around to take care of anything that needed to be done.Plus, I found many ways to raise awareness about RMHC-CNI at my school. I talked about the organization a lot, collected pop tabs, and even encouraged others to cook meals at the House.
- Why did you first start volunteering with RMHC-CNI, and what keeps you coming back?
I just love what the organization does and the services provided to families. The families are going through such stressful times, so it’s great to be part of a place that’s helping them out in their time of need.I really believe in what RMHC-CNI does, and the mission is what keeps me going back. I like Ronald McDonald House so much that I even visit other Houses when I travel! So far I’ve been to RMHC locations in Pennsylvania, New Orleans, San Antonio, Michigan, and Ireland.
- What is your favorite memory or experience from volunteering?
In the summer of 2019, I gave a House tour to a great volunteer meal group. In fact, the tour lasted more than 30 minutes because they were so engaged and asked so many great questions! I always love having the chance to show others the House and to raise awareness about the meaningful work going on.
- What does it mean to you to donate your time to RMHC-CNI?
Giving my time to RMHC-CNI is very meaningful and fulfilling. Every time I leave the House, I always feel like I’ve helped others, and I feel very satisfied with what I was able to accomplish. I’m always happy after volunteering because being at the House allows me to put my best food forward, and for that I’m grateful.
Thank you Nicoletta for your continued dedication and commitment!