Jerry Wish — University Without Walls (UWW)
How long have you been a DOROT volunteer?
17 years—since 1997
How did you get involved with DOROT?
My grandmother—who was a Hebrew school teacher in Cleveland, OH for over 60 years—benefitted from Meals on Wheels towards the end of her life. I was very close to my grandmother and I was touched by what that group did for her.
I heard about DOROT’s University Without Walls (UWW) program and saw this as a way for me to do something in my grandmother’s honor that would also benefit numerous other homebound elderly.
What type of volunteer activities do you do at DOROT?
I facilitate a class called “Our World Today” on the University Without Walls program.
In what ways has your DOROT volunteer experience impacted your life?
DOROT, University Without Walls, and the course participants have enriched my life greatly. There are few feelings that match the feeling of helping someone in need, particularly those like the UWW students who may be homebound but who are tremendously curious and intellectually active. UWW provides a wonderful way for these students to remain strong and vibrant intellectually, irrespective of their physical conditions.
What motivates you to continue volunteering at DOROT?
Just knowing that the UWW students enjoy the discussions I lead. That, as well as the fear that my longest–tenured student, Myrna—who has been taking my courses since 1998—will come up from Florida and beat me up if I were to stop leading the classes!
Most memorable volunteer moment
Every week when we have a good, robust debate and at least some students are, politely, disagreeing. What’s the fun if everyone agrees with one another? This is not Fox News or Rush Limbaugh!
What would you want other volunteers to know about volunteering at DOROT?
It’s a wonderful organization that I am very proud to be a part of.
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