An online community of nonprofit organizations in western PA

Category Archives: Watson Institute

Volunteering to Love, Loving to Volunteer

As a freshman at The University of Pittsburgh, Kate Werley knew she wanted to make a commitment to volunteering. “I knew that I wanted to get involved in the community, so I went to the Volunteer Fair [at The University of Pittsburgh],” Kate explained. “I’ve always enjoyed volunteering, but some past experiences were one-day events.  I really wanted to make more of a long-term commitment and form relationships with the people I would meet.” That’s exactly what she did.

After learning more about the unique program, Kate met with Vernie Mowad, a former volunteer coordinator, and MaryJo Alimena Caruso, CareBreak coordinator, to register for training and complete the forms necessary to become a CareBreak volunteer. After completing the training, she was more eager to start volunteering.

“MaryJo and Vernie really put a lot of time into matching volunteers with families to make sure they ‘click’. When I met the Rosas, I knew we would be a perfect match,” Kate recalled.  Since that initial meeting Kate has been visiting Charlie and Laura Rosa and their children— twins Teddy and Alex, Emily and Isabella. Teddy was diagnosed with autism when he was only a few years old. Continue Reading