February Volunteer of the Month – Lois Stanciak
Meet our volunteers! Each month, we highlight a stand-out volunteer (or two) and how they support families. For February, meet Lois Stanciak, whose dedication and creativity make her a valued member of our volunteer team.
- How long have you volunteered with us?
I have volunteered at the Ronald McDonald House near Advocate Children’s Hospital in Oak Lawn for more than five years.
- Where do you usually volunteer, and what do you typically do?
Normally (especially before COVID-19) I volunteer at the House every other week. I usually sit at the front desk and do whatever I can to assist the staff and families. I also put my calligraphy skills to use by writing birthday cards for others who support the House. Additionally, I get involved with Running for Hope every summer. During the event, I do face painting for the children, and even for some of the adults at the race!
Most recently I volunteered during Paint the Night, a virtual fundraiser that was put on by the Advocate House Teen Advisory Council. I supported the event by leading all participants to paint a forest scene. I truly appreciate having so many opportunities to put my varied skills and interests to good use for the organization.
- Why did you first start volunteering with RMHC-CNI, and what keeps you coming back?
As a parent, I know that when your kids are sick nothing else in the world matters. My heart goes out to the parents who stay at each Ronald McDonald House as they try to spend time with their kids with such serious medical conditions. I really feel that I have been blessed in life, and I love knowing that I can do something to make their lives a little easier – no matter how small.
Even when there seem to be so many negative things going on in the world, there is always positivity and kindness at the House. I particularly love the saying, “When you do something good for somebody, it makes two people feel good.” That’s exactly how I feel about supporting RMHC-CNI.
- What is your favorite memory or experience from volunteering?
Sometimes while volunteering, parents who previously stayed at the House bring their children back while on their way to a check-up. Those kids – who may have been so sick before – are pictures of health and are well on their way to great lives. What could be more meaningful or provide more joy than seeing a healthy child?
I’ve also been in the House when parents had to make incredibly difficult decisions about their child’s medical care, and that breaks my heart. But it is also so amazing to see the generosity of others who are willing to help the families served by RMHC-CNI. So many people don’t think twice about giving substantial gifts or donating their time to provide support, and I love being part of such a caring community.
- What does it mean to you to donate your time to RMHC-CNI?
For me, volunteering means making a positive contribution to parents facing some of the most challenging and frightening circumstances imaginable. I am honored to provide support and to be a part of their journey.
Thank you Lois for your continued dedication and commitment to helping families get better together!