Just like our region is fueled by water—for drinking, cleaning, and for households and businesses alike—Portland, too, is fueled by the countless hours volunteers give of their time an money to helping make this region a great place to live, work, and play.
Your friends and neighbors that work at the Water Bureau are no different. Water Bureau employees pour hundreds of hours into our local communities through a variety of volunteer efforts.
Celebrating Volunteerism for National Volunteer Month
April is National Volunteer Month, and we are saying "thank you" to the people of Portland who give back each and every day and make Portland a truly special place to live. From neighborhood cleanups to volunteering at animal shelters, their work touches nearly every corner.
Here are a few of our employees' volunteer stories. To follow more stories, visit our Facebook and Twitter feed.
If you’re looking to take your hikes to the next level, Eric has you covered. An asset management analyst with the bureau, he spends 20 days a year teaching at a mountaineering education and climbing club.
And if something were to go wrong on one of your climbs, Marty, a GIS tech, could be the one saving your life. Anderson volunteers with the Pacific Northwest Search and Rescue after being inspired by seeing “a variety of people working together with a common goal of rescuing one person.”
A handful of employees coach and mentor children, in various activities from Cub Scouts and PTA boards to track and wrestling.
"I love working with youth and seeing them connect in positive ways through running,” said Water Bureau engineer Marie, who spends more than 300 hours every year coaching young athletes. Recently Mac, a water quality engineering associate, used his role as a scout leader to teach Cub Scouts about how vital it is to strap on a helmet when riding their bikes. Mac used honeydews to display how big a difference helmets can make.
“It had a big impact,” Mac said. “I am grateful to mentors who have helped me along my path. By contributing to our community, we all help each other reach our potential.”
Busy-bee Angie is an administration assistance in our Maintenance and Construction division. And a "busy bee" is no exaggeration. Angie spends over 600 hours per year volunteering for various programs and organizations nationally and locally. Some of her favorites include being President of Good in the Hood, helping with the United Negro College Fund Portfolio Project, the Leisure Hour Jr. Golf Program, and she's actively involved in her church and faith community. Plus, Angie volunteers for several Water Bureau work committees, including the Equity Committee where Water Bureau employees meet to develop strategies and plans for increasing opportunities within the bureau's work.
John, a water quality inspector acknowledges that his volunteer story is a little "different." "I volunteered to allow the County and City to house a homeless family in a tiny house in my back yard. I signed a five year contract that guarantees stable housing for families at risk so their kids can go to the same school and they can wake up in a safe warm house for up to five years. John is hopeful that, in the future, a program like this could dramatically change people's lives.
Accountant Jennifer and her husband volunteer to at their children’s music events, help organize fundraisers and coach little league. Schneider is a licensed foster parent and says, “we are trying to raise our children to give back to the community, to see the big picture and be willing to help others.”
Thank you to our employee volunteers and to all Portlanders striving to make a positive difference each and every day!