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Call goes out for volunteers

Jared Felkins jfelkins@lebanondemocrat.com • Dec 15, 2015 at 1:48 PM

About a dozen local nonprofit organizations and service agencies invited community members Tuesday to lunch and to hear a little more about what each does.

A common theme emerged throughout the Volunteer Spirit of Wilson County Lunch and Learn as one by one representatives asked for more volunteers.

Sponsored by Wilson County, the Place To Be and started by a Leadership Wilson class of 2014 small group, the lunch served as a kickoff to build a database of volunteers throughout Wilson County who could lend service to organizations and agencies in need.

“It’s time we put together Hands On Wilson County,” said Gary Soloway, a member of the Leadership Wilson small group.

“We are fortunate to live in a county that has a lot to offer,” said Randall Clemons, chairman of Wilson County, the Place To Be. “We need volunteers to support the many organizations that offer services in Wilson County.”

Representatives with organizations, including Help Quest, Fiddlers Grove Foundation, Wilson County Museum, Fiddlers Grove Train Museum, Lebanon schools Family Learning Center’s backpack program, Lebanon Public Safety, Historic Watertown, Pickett Chapel and Wilson County Black History Associates, Historic Lebanon, Wilson County Help Center and University Medical Center volunteers program.

Kim Lacy, with the Family Resource Center, said volunteers are needed to serve food and hold canned food and clothing drives.

Brenda Moss with Fiddlers Grove said a goal would be to have daily tours of the attraction at the Wilson County Fairgrounds.

“Fiddlers Grove can be a showcase for Wilson County,” Moss said.

With a similar need, James Jordan said it’s the 30th anniversary of the Wilson County Museum, but tours are led by appointment only. The museum is in the Fessenden House at 236 W. Main St.

“The house is truly the house for all Wilson County citizens,” Jordan said.

Kim Parks, director of Historic Lebanon, said the organization needs volunteers to maintain Lebanon’s designation as a Main Street Community.

“Part of being a Main Street Community is the need for volunteers for our four committees,” Parks said. “We have a great museum in the basement of City Hall that needs volunteers.”

Dennis Spicer, director of the Community Help Center, said volunteers are needed to help with a new effort called Compassionate Hands. The effort that launches in December includes seven local churches that provide shelter to the homeless during the winter months.

Pam Wiggins with University Medical Center said the hospital has volunteers who range from 18-92 that lend assistance to many from patients to doctors. But she said more volunteers are needed.

Wiggins also said the literacy program at the Adult Learning Center is also in need of volunteers.

In all, 88 people attended Tuesday’s luncheon.

“All of these are established endeavors that are looking for volunteers, and they really need your help,” Clemons said.

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