Written by Julie Sage
The sun shone overhead, the pool water was clear and refreshing, and 1960’s music permeated the outside space. An aerobics swimming instructor called out the exercise cadence and 8 mature women stepped lively to the beat. I was surrounded by 4 women whose bodies moved easily in the water and also their mouths as they chatted excitedly about an upcoming Assistance League fundraiser. What was Assistance League? I felt like I might be missing out on something interesting.
I’m known by my friends for asking questions. ☺ I asked about Assistance League (known then as Assistance League of Auburn Foothills), and I was invited right than to their regular meeting the next day. One lady, Pauline Pfeiffer, just happened to live in my neighborhood and offered to “sponsor” me and drive me to the meeting. Talk about excellent recruitment strategies in action! Overnight, I became a new perspective Assistance League member in June 1997.
I learned the organization was a chapter of National Assistance League and had a Thrift Shop in Auburn. What impressed me the most was the enthusiasm of all the members. They were excited to tell me about Assistance League, their thrift shop and the philanthropic programs they provided. And they accomplished all this with NO PAID staff. All Volunteers! I had worked with the United Crusade/United Way and was aware of the budgeting for nonprofit organizations, and wondered how Assistance League could accomplish all they did!
The Thrift Shop was the chapter’s primary source of funding…and all the member volunteers donated their time and talents! I was hooked! I had to be a part of this energetic, compassionate, caring group of ladies!
And so, it is now 2017. I, Julie Sage, was presented a 20 YEAR pin at our June meeting.
I can’t believe it has been 20 years of service!
When I joined in 1997 there were about 50 members, and now we have 230 members. In 2005, we changed our name to Assistance League of Greater Placer to reflect all the communities we serve with our 13 philanthropic programs. We have increased the size of our “classy” Thrift Shop and have talented volunteers who showcase our inventory. We work tirelessly to provide quality and value items for sale. Our friendly volunteers greet every customer and donor to our shop. Just one visit and you too will be hooked!
I am aware that I repeat this quote to friends and acquaintances often:
“Life is what happens to you while you are busy making other plans.”
I could never have imagined, 20 years ago, how doing water aerobics would benefit my life beyond the much-needed exercise. Life is always full of surprises and Assistance League of Greater Placer has been a welcomed gift in my life!