LaFleur’s commitment to volunteering is especially important to me, and so is Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids, where several members of our team recently spent a fun evening volunteering. Gilda’s Club provides free emotional healthcare to children, adults, families, and friends on any kind of cancer journey or those grieving the death of someone in their life due to any cause.
I came to LaFleur after spending many years working at Gilda’s Club and have witnessed the impactful work they do every day in the community. Most of us have been impacted by cancer or death in some way. Sadly, though, most of us aren’t aware of the many resources available to help us cope with these difficult life events and connect with others on a parallel journey.
Volunteering with Gilda’s Club was an excellent opportunity to give back to a great organization, serve our community, and share the Gilda’s Club mission with the entire LaFleur team.
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Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids Serves Hundreds of Members Each Week
Four nights each week, members come to the clubhouse for free dinner and specialized group work. It still amazes me how they can provide meals, support, activities, and resources for members when they need them the most at zero cost. On a yearly basis, Gilda’s Club offers over 1,000 adult support groups and more than 700 youth and family programs.
Our job for the evening was to feed and welcome some of those members. After meeting the volunteer staff and being given a tour of the facility, we got right to work in the kitchen preparing a delicious meal we all agreed we would be adding to our dinner rotation at home. Once dinner was ready, we served the members and then sat down to eat with everyone in the community room before they headed off to their support groups and activities.
After dinner was over and the kitchen was cleaned, we were invited to stay and watch a dance group perform for some of the youth members. It was fun to see another local organization sharing their time, engaging with and teaching the kids how to dance.
Through my own experience with Gilda’s Club, I have seen how this place, and the weekly activities provided, can change peoples’ lives, and I was so grateful to share that experience with my LaFleur colleagues. We had such a fantastic evening working as a team and socializing with everyone at the clubhouse. We’re planning to help out regularly and even volunteer at some upcoming LaughFest events.
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10 Things About Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids You May Not Know
Here is some more information about Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids:
- The organization is named after and inspired by Saturday Night Live legend, Gilda Radner — and her journey with ovarian cancer.
- Gilda’s Club Grand Rapids is one of the largest and busiest of the 41 affiliates in North America.
- They have been serving the West Michigan community for nearly 20 years.
- The organization offers 262 programs each month.
- Gilda’s Club collaborates with area hospitals, schools, and non-profits to expand their mission and reach.
- Nearly half of the Gilda’s Club membership is composed of men and children.
- Every support group is facilitated by master’s level professionals.
- Last year alone, there were more than 35,000 visits to the Grand Rapids and Lowell clubhouses.
- Gilda’s Club is 100% privately funded, and every dollar remains local.
- The organization relies on volunteers who gift more than 10,000 hours annually.
To learn more about the organization or get involved please visit Gilda’s Club’s website.
Learn More About Volunteering or Working With LaFleur
At LaFleur, we’re dedicated to helping our community and our clients grow and succeed any way we can.
If you would like to learn more about our proven holistic approach to digital marketing, please complete this brief form or call us directly at (888) 222-1512. Or, if you’re interested in teaming with our organization to explore volunteering opportunities in West Michigan, please contact Sarah LaFleur by emailing her at [email protected].
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Gilda’s Club Community Impact Report. (2017). Gilda’s Club. Retrieved from https://www.gildasclubgr.org/gildas-club-community-impact-report/