Volunteers founded Hubbard House in 1976, and today our volunteers continue to serve a vital role in every aspect of the agency. Why are volunteers so important to Hubbard House? Volunteers contribute their time and energy, their ideas and ideals. They increase our visibility in the community, expand our capacity to provide services, and send a strong message of caring to our clients.
It is because of the support and generosity given by Hubbard House volunteers and donors that we are able to provide services to more than 6,000 women, children, and men annually and ensure that their hope for peace, dreams of tomorrow, and strength for their children are not lost.
This volunteer spotlight focuses on Steffani Fletcher. Steffani is the Executive Director of Hope At Hand, Inc., a nonprofit organization that facilitates healing and personal growth through art and poetry to children and adults with limited resources. Steffani has been providing classes to the women staying at the Hubbard House Shelter since May of this year.
Why did you decide to donate time and resources to Hubbard House? Through Hope at Hand, I’m able to secure funding and provide services to underserved populations. I’ve had a soft spot in my heart for the plight of women at Hubbard House for a long time. When I got married in 1999, we asked friends and family to make a donation to Hubbard House in lieu of gifts. I am also a survivor of domestic violence so it was an easy connection for me to make.
What made you get connected with Hubbard House? The Hope at Hand lessons have been very successful in similar facilities. After my first poetry class at Hubbard House, the women were already asking me when I was coming back! Success! The women were so grateful after my class. Some shed tears of joy and there were lots of hugs going around the room. Most were trying to lift each other up even though they at a tough point in their own lives. The way the women supported and comforted each other was inspirational to witness and keeps me motivated to do more.
What has your volunteer experience with Hubbard House meant to you? As a 22 year educator, I love being out in the community. I know I’m doing some good at my elementary school, but it’s nothing like the work I do through Hope at Hand. My poetry lessons fulfill the need to connect with people in a helping way. I get to blend my knowledge and experience of education with creativity. I really love journaling, writing and poetry because it is so self-sufficient. Paper and pencil is all you need to purge feelings and empower yourself to take a long hard look at your day, your actions, your relationships, your hopes and dreams. It’s all right there in black and white. Nothing fancy needed. I love being able to pass this simple, independent gift of language on to the participants in my poetry classes.
If you are interested in learning more about volunteer opportunities available at Hubbard House please visit www.hubbardhouse.org/help/volunteering/ or contact Tracy Knight at (904) 354-0076 ext. 251 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you or someone you know is in an abusive relationship please call the Hubbard House 24-hour domestic violence hot-line at (904) 354-3114 or (800) 500-1119. Hubbard House can help.
ABOUT HUBBARD HOUSE: Founded as the first domestic violence shelter in Florida in 1976, Hubbard House is a certified, comprehensive domestic violence center providing programs and services to more than 6,000 women, children, and men annually in Duval and Baker counties. While Hubbard House is most known for its emergency shelter, the agency also provides extensive adult and youth outreach services, school-based education, therapeutic childcare, batterers’ intervention programs, court advocacy and volunteer and community education opportunities. Visit http://www.hubbardhouse.org to learn more.