By Ruby Zavala
This month we have an amazing duo to introduce as our Volunteers of the Month. Caitlin and Audrey are two teens who started volunteering with Boulder Carry-Out Caravan during the pandemic. These 16-year old best friends attend Boulder High School, where they play soccer and love to spend time together doing just about anything, including helping in the community. They both value the time they have spent with their grandparents and have learned from the experiences they have gone through. Because of their direct experience with their own grandparents, they are passionate about making a difference in other seniors' lives.
Although very different people, Caitlin and Audrey have some similar life experiences that connect them in a strong way. Both of them love animals and their first jobs were babysitting pets. Even though it can be challenging at times, they love interacting with and learning from the animals.
Caitlin is known as a kind, light hearted, lovable person. Since a young child, she has wanted to be a baker. She enjoys baking all different kinds of treats and enjoys creating new tastes and frosting flavors! She also enjoys rainy days, watching movies, and sitting around in the living room with her family drinking hot cocoa. A perfect day for her is a “lazy day” where she doesn’t have to worry about anything! She also loves hiking and says “especially living here in Colorado, it is sad if people do not take the time to enjoy the beautiful mountains we have.” One of her proudest moments so far has been hiking Longs Peak, immediately followed by a soccer game where she scored a goal.
Caitlin has two amazing women in her life who inspire her: her mom and her sister. They encourage her each day to be the amazing teen she is, “I couldn’t do it without their support and advice. I thank them for being there for every good and bad moment in my life.” She has also learned a lot from her Grandpa and admires how he came to America to build a new life and create a good future, without knowing anyone, “He participated in the Bolder Boulder not long ago, survived cancer, and always has an amazing smile on his face.” When her grandmother had to move to assisted living, Caitlin saw the struggles she was having which made her realize that other seniors probably have similar experiences. This is when she started looking for an organization to volunteer with to help seniors and thankfully, she found Cultivate! She really enjoys shopping at the store, knowing that she has a direct positive impact on the seniors in her community.
Audrey is known for being generous, friendly, and helpful. She enjoys studying, listening to music, and anything that has to do with nature! Audrey also plays the cello and loves to decorate. As a little girl, she wanted to become a doctor because she admired how they helped and saved lives; she wanted to be a hero too! As Audrey grew up, she began playing soccer and one of her goals was to become so skilled at the sport that she could play on a top team. She is proud to say that she has accomplished that goal!
Audrey is very family-oriented and says a perfect day would be to wake up, ski, have dinner, and end the day watching a movie with her family. Audrey’s mom inspires her every day; her mom has taught her to find the silver lining in every situation and is grateful that she has such a supportive mother. Audrey’s grandmother has had a positive impact on Audrey’s life, “[my grandma] is really generous and she loves spending her time making others smile. She always encourages us to not take anything for granted and be more understanding. Volunteering with Cultivate has been fun and a great experience for me and Caitlin. We really enjoy it!”
Audrey is very adventurous; her bucket list includes scuba diving with sharks and swimming with fish. She hopes to accomplish at least one of these things soon. Audrey is wise beyond her years and says “I know I might be young, but in my opinion, I think that as teenagers we need to be more selfless and take care of nature, the country, and the world. This is one of many reasons why I like to be able to help out and make a difference and volunteering with Cultivate, shopping for seniors’ groceries allows me to make that difference!”
Caitlin and Audrey were nominated because they are two caring, thoughtful, and dedicated young women who shopped every week with Boulder Carry-Out Caravan. They always arrived at the store with the best attitude and were willing to help wherever was needed until the end of the day! Thank you ladies for all that you do. You are making a difference in the world and you serve as an inspiration for other young people to make a difference in our community!
About Ruby Zavala:
Ruby Zavala joined the Cultivate family three years ago as a Program Specialist, specializing in Carry-Out Caravan and Latino Outreach. Ruby is passionate about helping people and brightening the lives of others. When she is not working, she loves CrossFit, hiking, traveling, trying new foods, and being immersed in Colorado’s beautiful nature. Ruby is a lover of learning, aspiring to gain a deeper understanding of the world she lives in.
Our dedicated volunteers are crucial to the Cultivate family and living our mission of helping seniors flourish through active engagement with their community. Each month we will feature their stories in Volunteer of the Month. If you are interested or want to nominate someone else, please contact Ruby at firstname.lastname@example.org
Help seniors flourish by reconnecting them—as recipients and contributors—with their surrounding communities.