ALSC’s July Volunteer of the Month is the amazing Aunnie Steward! Aunnie is one of the superb volunteers who runs the ALSC landlord/tenant helpline, where she provides answers and guidance to callers facing critical housing issues from around the state. Read on for our interview with Aunnie about her time volunteering for ALSC:
Why did you choose to volunteer with ALSC?
I chose to volunteer with ALSC housing helpline because as a federal prosecutor I have seen how important housing is as a building block of stability in people’s lives. Housing is a basic need that if not filled makes it difficult to attain other goals like employment and stable relationships. Also, as a landlord I understand how frustrating it can be to deal with less than ideal tenants. I want to be able to support folks in both categories when they need some guidance or even when they just need someone to listen to their story.
What are some of your experiences at ALSC that have made a positive difference in the lives of others and/or the community?
I had one caller to the helpline call back a couple of months later and thank me for the help that he received when he had called previously. He indicated that he felt empowered to deal with the situation. At the end of almost every call the caller is incredibly grateful for any guidance provided and you can usually hear the relief in their voice that they have been heard and have a better understanding of their options.
How do you think your experiences with ALSC will benefit you in the future?
Listening to the stories of those struggling with housing issues has increased my empathy for individuals facing challenges meeting their basic needs.
Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?
I also volunteer with Big Brothers Big Sisters. I have been ‘matched’ for nine years. Volunteering for BBBS and for ALSC is incredibly fulfilling. Contributing positively to the community I live in is very important to me.