Written by Jessica Meadows
Every Monday morning, LuAnn Spanton embraces her opportunity to pursue a passion that she has had since she was a child. She recalls the times growing up in Brokaw, WI, when she first realized this is what she wanted to do. With a smile on her face, she shared with me:
“I always did my sister’s hair and my mother’s hair…and this grumpy old lady in Brokaw, too!”
LuAnn does not work in a hair salon. She does not even accept money for the services she provides…
Every Monday morning, for the last 27 years — yes, you read that right! — LuAnn Spanton has graciously volunteered her time to set hair for the residents at Mount View Care Center in Wausau.
Back in 1990, LuAnn was a stay-at-home mother of 4, whose youngest child had just entered high school. When she saw an ad in the newspaper for a nursing home looking for volunteers, she and her sister-in-law decided to give it a try…
It was the first time she had volunteered, and it has been the only volunteer position she has held since then. LuAnn was so excited to find that she had the opportunity to match her passion to purpose…
The nursing home team was delighted to have her help set hair for its residents!
Volunteering — What You Get in Return
LuAnn quickly learned the importance of volunteering in a nursing facility…
Volunteers are able to assist caregivers and residents with activities, outings, and some of the tasks of daily life — like styling hair. LuAnn is able to give her time and talents to make the residents feel good about themselves. But she also gets something in return…
LuAnn has developed life-long friendships and made great memories along the way. She and another volunteer have set hair together for 15 years, calling their tag team the “Monday Group.”
LuAnn quickly developed a following, as some of the residents specifically requested her to set their hair. LuAnn explained:
“I felt special. I enjoy putting rollers in and their hair looks nice. They feel good. It doesn’t feel right if I am not here every Monday morning. We never miss Mondays. Not even in snowstorms. I am in it for the long haul.”
LuAnn grew up in Brokaw before moving to the Town of Texas with her husband Bud to raise their 4 children. After 45 years, they settled in the Village of Weston. Her connections with the community are strong, and she is reminded of her roots when she volunteers:
“An old school teacher of mine came in to get her hair done at Mount View. It was funny to have her. I went to grade school in Brokaw. She was one of my three teachers, and now I am setting her hair.”
Advice for Anyone Who Wants to Volunteer
“Start with what you are comfortable with. That is what I like to do — hair.”
Finding volunteer opportunities that match your interests is very important. At Mount View Care Center, you can look online for volunteer opportunities at http://norcen.org/VolunteerOpportunities. Anyone with a desire to help others can apply as a volunteer.
No special talent or education is required to volunteer at North Central Health Care.
Volunteers are part of the team. They offer clients, patients, residents, and staff members their compassion, skills, talent, and time. In so doing, professionals are able to devote more time to direct patient care and recovery.
Volunteers are men, women, teenagers, and students, all sharing a common desire — to help people lead better lives and to let them know that another person feels they are worthwhile enough to spend time with them.
Most often, people volunteer because volunteering:
- Is a good use of extra time, especially valued because of the person’s enhanced feeling of self-worth
- Is a good way to gain or re-learn business, communication, and interpersonal skills
- Is a way to remain active in retirement years
- Is an excellent way to research a career in health care
- Gives individuals an opportunity to meet new people and develop new friendships
- Is a way to further enhance a person’s talents or develop new skills, all in an environment of caring
- Improves your health, happiness, and well-being
- Is a great way to meet new people and make new friends
Volunteers – We Are So Grateful for You!
To all those who volunteer in Marathon County — and throughout Central Wisconsin — including LuAnn Spanton, WE THANK YOU for all your generosity, time, and dedication. Your efforts matter.
We are grateful for all that you bring to our community. You share your time, talents, and skills with those in need, and we are so thankful for all that you do!
If you are interested in connecting with new volunteer opportunities all over the county, please visit the United Way of Marathon County’s Volunteer Connection at http://unitedwaymc.galaxydigital.com.
Or, if LuAnn’s story speaks to you and you’d like to get involved at North Central Health Care as a volunteer, you can see our available volunteer opportunities at http://norcen.org/volunteer.
Communications & Marketing Coordinator | North Central Health Care
As the Communications and Marketing Coordinator at North Central Health Care (NCHC), Jessica Meadows is passionate about being able to use her creative talents to connect people to healthcare, resources, and networking that will impact their life in a positive way. Prior to joining NCHC, she was a Creative Director and leader at a marketing agency in the Stevens Point area. With almost 20 years’ experience in print, web, social media, video, radio, and public relations, it was important for her to connect back to her roots here in the Wausau area, where she and her husband raise their two young children. When she’s not busy at an event or volunteering, she enjoys playing sports, coaching, biking, traveling, and exploring the outdoors. Email Jessica Meadows.
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