Every Wednesday night, Jessica Steenbergen puts down her teaching materials and picks up a coffee pot. Steenbergen has been a Beverage Cart volunteer for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital since February of 2016. She first became interested in being involved at St. Jude because of her previous volunteer experience at Give Kids the World Village, a resort in Florida that serves families affected by childhood illnesses.
“Working for children and their families is my passion.” Steenbergen says. “As a weekly volunteer, you get the opportunity to see the same families week after week. My favorite memories are those that involve families I have gotten to know. Being able to serve people their ‘usual’ order is such a treat.”
Although Steenbergen is an elementary school teacher by day, it seems her passion for working with children never ceases.
“The best part about volunteering at St. Jude is the kids. The impromptu concerts that occur when walking past play rooms, the smile on the children’s faces when you compliment something they are building, or the light in their eyes when I tell them that there are marshmallows in the hot chocolate is why I enjoy volunteering at St. Jude so much,” she says.
Steenbergen says her time at St. Jude has also given her a new perspective on what it means to serve in a community.
“Volunteering here has made it clear that there is no act too small when trying to give back to your community,” she says. “I know coffee and hot chocolate aren’t the most important things in life, but if I can provide one smile on my cart duty, then I have done my job.”