LSG volunteer Mary Maio helped create hundreds of smiles across Georgia this December. Through her volunteer work with LSG's Hope Tree, many children in need were able to unwrap a Christmas gift picked out just for them.
A former microbiologist and past owner of her own medical transcription company, Mary found her way to LSG through the Atlanta chapter of the Ignatian Volunteer Corps, a volunteer group that provides men and women, mostly retirement age, with the opportunity to use their experience and talents to serve a nonprofit in need of help.
Since she started working with LSG last May, Mary has been integral to the success of many of our special events. Mary helped procure and organize hundreds of silent auction items for our Heroes of Hope Gala and Savannah Golf Tournament. This spring, she'll be helping out with other events like Hunger Walk/Run, the Prayer Breakfast and Low Country Pie Festival in Savannah.
“Working in LSG's development department has been a rewarding experience," says Mary. "Witnessing the generosity of others has been really eye-opening. In fundraising, we’re not often working face-to-face with the needy, but it feels good to know that by collecting donations and raising money, it makes that work possible.”
Without Mary’s behind-the-scenes work with Hope Tree, LSG wouldn’t have been able to provide for as many families in 2015. Part of her role was compiling the many wish lists from our Foster Care children and helping recruit churches and individuals to buy the gifts.
“Reading the wish lists of the children in Foster Care, and then watching the gifts pour in from our generous donors and seeing a whole office packed full of gifts was incredible," says Mary. "Working at LSG has really made me aware of the different vulnerable populations that need our support. I was happy to be a part of providing so many refugees – who come from mostly warm climates – with a coat for the winter and so many children in Foster Care with what might be their only gift this year."
Prior to her volunteer work with Ignatian Volunteer Corps and Lutheran Services of Georgia, Mary spent much of her adult life exploring different areas of the United States as she and her husband Doug moved around the country as he was transferred for work. Originally from Louisiana, Mary and her husband moved between New York, Colorado, California, Georgia, and New Jersey over the years. When it came time to retire in 2001, the couple chose Roswell to settle in.
She says that people are often surprised to learn that her background is not in fundraising, but she hopes others will be inspired by her to learn new skills and use their talents in new ways in retirement or a mid-life career change.
Can you help us?
LSG relies on volunteers like Mary. Without volunteers, the many programs and services we offer just wouldn't be possible. For information on volunteering, click here. If you are interested in donating an item for a silent auction for our Pie Festival or Heroes of Hope gala, click to email Mary.