Today we are shining the GiGi’s Playhouse Annapolis Volunteer Spotlight on Kamarri, a terrific GiGi’s volunteer.
Finding out about GiGi’s Playhouse Annapolis:
As a junior in high school, students are required to complete a summer project that helps other people. Kamarri and his mom Marsha first looked for a food bank in the area, but couldn’t find one that was open to volunteers. They decided to speak with Kamarri’s Occupational Therapist who recommended they seek out an organization that helps individuals with Autism and/or Down syndrome. Later that day they came across GiGi’s Playhouse Annapolis in their first attempt online. After reading GiGi’s mission statement, Kamarri was super excited and told his mom, “Mom, I received a lot of help for me to understand and adapt to my Autism. I would like help people as I’ve been helped.”
Volunteering at GiGi’s Playhouse Annapolis:
Kamarri made it his mission to do all he can to help GiGi’s Playhouse Annapolis by volunteering in programs such as TeenTastic, Art Explosion, Fantastic Friends, and Chess Club. Kamarri decided to take on some administrative duties such as filing papers, arranging rooms before and after programs and even assisting with organizing our storage areas! Andre enjoyed every minute of Kamarri’s time volunteering, especially on Saturdays where Kamarri would try to devote his time to any programs planned at the Playhouse. While volunteering in the programs, he also built relationships and made friends.
“It was fun doing activities with Kamarri. We discovered we had some things in common. We both liked singing at GiGi’s karaoke night, in the International Explorers program, we discovered we were both born in Germany, and we both really enjoyed doing the art project in Lunch Bunch! He is a very bright friend.” Alicia, GiGi’s participant.
Tracy, GiGi’s TeenTastic Leader shared, “I met Kamarri in July when he was a new program volunteer. He was very helpful and just a little shy as new volunteers usually are. Whatever I asked him to do, he would gladly do. At one point in the evening he noticed a participant who was in need of some extra support. Before I had a chance to reach out, Kamarri was up and deep in conversation for several minutes with our friend. They both returned to the group happy and participatory. I will always be impressed with Kamarri’s intuitive and kind spirit from that evening.”
“Volunteering has helped Kamarri to understand the different challenges that people with Down syndrome have. I saw that Kamarri was excited to help in any way that he could and become more responsible to fulfill the commitment that he made to GiGi’s Playhouse. Thank you so much for allowing Kamarri to volunteer,” shared his mom, Marsha.
A big thank you to Kamarri for his time, talent and most importantly, his friendship. We are so grateful for Kamarri’s outstanding volunteer service of nearly 40 hours this summer!