The year was 1984. Our Spanish community started growing and some families were in need. Judy Morrow, a community leader known for helping others, became aware of this. I met her when she was working out of a barn where she had furniture stored. If someone I knew needed help, I would call her and she would give me a time and date and a family would go and pick up the items that she would have for them.
My volunteering started by helping families in need sign up for Thanksgiving and Christmas Baskets. I would do the translating for the Spanish speaking people who needed food, clothing and other needs. My mother and sister were always helping me, so they too joined in the effort.
I saw the needs of people that came as immigrants to try to make a better life for their families. I saw their reluctance at first for fear that they would not get help when they didn’t have anything to start a new life in a strange place. There were not a lot of agencies or other persons willing to help or give them a chance to prove that they could be hard working people…willing to work with just a little help to start over.
I was very grateful to know there was an agency starting to form that was fair, honest and willing to help those in need. All one had to do was to ask and be truthful about your circumstance. When I talk to my friends about when they first got to Burlington years ago, the community effort to form Love, Inc. always comes into the conversation. I have always told my co-workers over the years that in Burlington, not a single person should be suffering on their own with hunger or clothing because Love, Inc. made sure that there would be a place to help.