Mosaic in Northern Indiana

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Community Advisory Committee Members and Why They Volunteer

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Top: Jeff Malcolm, Kathy Olson Bottom: Karen McVicker, Melody Robinson, Marsha Wirt

Top: Jeff Malcolm, Kathy Olson
Bottom: Karen McVicker, Melody Robertson, Marsha Wirt

Marsha Wirt, Karen McVicker and Melody Robertson are board members on Mosaic’s Community Advisory Committee (CAC). They volunteer for Mosaic events, provide crafts, food and activities for our residents and travel to conferences to learn how they can continue to help share our mission.

About three years ago. Marsha Wirt was the VP on the council at her church, Grace Lutheran. Mosaic managers came to speak at her church one morning and share Mosaic’s mission.

“My first thought was this will take forever,” she remembers laughing. “But that quickly turned to, ‘What can I do to help?” During that one hour presentation, Marsha was moved.

“I told my husband God is telling me something. I talked to Jeff and asked him what I can do to help. He invited me to a CAC meeting and then I was asked to go to Dallas to learn about volunteering and fundraising. They talked about being an ambassador, or bringing people to hear about Mosaic. I instantly knew that’s my role. I knew of 20 people right away who would be interested. I was impressed Mosaic always asks the people receiving services what their dreams are and they help them achieve them,” she said.

Marsha also bakes cookies for Mosaic’s annual Christmas party and other holidays and special occasions-and not just a few cookies- 130 dozen at a time!

“I bake them all and have my friends come over and help me decorate. I brought Easter egg shaped cookies to day program and let the residents decorate them,” Marsha said.

Marsha continues to increase her involvement with Mosaic. She is hosting a patio party at her home on July 22nd. A patio party is a great time to have a few friends over and listen to three people involved with the agency share their experience.

“I think more people should be aware of Mosaic. I have another 20 or so people I want to share the mission with. I also have my husband and son involved. I’m a retired kindergarten teacher and I sometimes worked with special needs children. My husband and I feel there is so much to help children but not when they grow up. I look at my children and grandchildren and they are so healthy. We are so blessed, the other families are too in other ways.

Marsha Wirt and Karen McVicker

Marsha Wirt and Karen McVicker

Karen McVicker has also been involved with Mosaic for about three years.

“My daughter, Anne Marie has been in the business for about 25 years or more. I always knew what she did and thought it was so great. Caregivers love who they don’t have to, they are not family. I have always been around people we serve but didn’t realize some of them don’t have families or someone to take care of them.

Anne Marie invited me to a Discover the Possibilities tour and I was blown away. I had no idea the depth of their involvement. It’s not just a job or taking care of someone’s physical needs. It’s the philosophy of getting these individuals out into the community.

I had a handout that said there were volunteer opportunities. I didn’t know there were volunteers involved in the mission. I said I was interested and was asked to be on the Community Advisory Committee. So I tried it and then I went to Dallas to learn more information. I was excited! I said I would do whatever needs to be done. I started mending clothing for anyone who needed it and doing nails once a month in day program.

I feel it’s so worthwhile. It’s not totally selfless, it’s selfish because the feeling you get when you help is so good and lasts a long time.

I’m so impressed that the services at Mosaic are individualized for the clients because they are so different. I have seen them counsel people about where to go or how to get on the Medicaid list even if they can’t help them,” Karen said.

Melody Robinson and Pastor Andrea Hickey

Melody Robertson and Pastor Andrea Hickey

Melody Robertson has a longer history with Mosaic.

“I’ve been aware of Mosaic for years. Residents from the Benham home used to attend my church, Lutheran Church of the Redeemer, which is close by. Someone from the home said they never get mail so the church started to send cards. We would also go to the home and make spaghetti dinners and host barbecues and have bingo at the church.

I really thought Mosaic was only group homes. I was a special education teacher and was about to retire. I wanted to give back and do something. The church hosted a program and Mosaic was there. They were talking about the Meaningful Day program. I thought I could do a craft or cooking.

I was invited to a Discover the Possibilities tour at the office and it was nice. There were a lot of people, college kids from Bethel and educators. I thought, I could do this. Jeff called and I said I wanted to work with the day program. I had never worked with adults before, just the Benham residents. The children I worked with generally were higher functioning and needed less care. I did some training and started coming in Wednesdays there. Then I got involved with the CAC and I’m glad I did,” she said.

 

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