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DOROT Westchester


Cynthia Samwick - Westchester Friendly Visitor

How long have you been a DOROT volunteer?

My first volunteer experience when I moved to the Big Apple from North Carolina in 1986 was with DOROT. Here I met Elise. She was a Holocaust survivor from Vienna and her husband was a psychiatrist. I loved my visits with Elise. I never had a relationship with a grandparent and I quickly “adopted” her. Truth be told, I benefited as much or more from our weekly one hour visits than she did. During our candid conversations, she encouraged self-reliance, perspective and the need to persevere.

How did you get involved with DOROT?

I got involved when I first came to NY from North Carolina and was a Friendly Visitor.

What type of volunteer activities do you do at DOROT?

I started as a Friendly Visitor and when I moved to Westchester continued and then did my social work internship through Fordham University at DOROT Westchester from 2011-2012. I currently am on the Westchester Committee and have hosted Shabbat Shalom Westchester and have recruited many of my friends to become involved. Doing package deliveries and Shabbat Shalom Westchester allows me to continue serving older adults in the Westchester community. I have been a telephone buddy, raised awareness about DOROT and help in the fundraising.

In what ways has your DOROT volunteer experience impacted your life?

I enjoy giving to others and find I get a great deal in return. It is truly a two way street and I am the beneficiary.

What motivates you to continue volunteering at DOROT?

I love old people and find that I can learn so much from them. I want to support DOROT and help get the word out to a broader audience.

Most memorable volunteer moment:

Taking my 86 year old father to a DOROT event at the NY Historical Society and for him to see the group I am volunteering with made me very proud.

What would you want other volunteers to know about volunteering at DOROT?

You get more than you give.

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