Today we are excited to launch Maggie’s Volunteer of the Month to recognize and appreciate certain volunteers for their hard work and dedication to our community. Each month, one volunteer will be selected based on their involvement, punctuality, dependability, or stand out behavior.
We are very honored and excited to announce Bridget Johns, who is also an alumna of our Social Detox Program, as our July Volunteer of the Month!
“Bridget Johns has been volunteering for The Magdalen House for about a year now. Seeing her personal and spiritual growth over all this time has been so inspiring! Her dedication to this community, her willingness, and flexibility has been invaluable to this agency! Thank you Bridget for all the wonderful things you have done and continue to do for us. We couldn’t do this without you!” – Taylor Stokes, Volunteer Program Coordinator
Meet Bridget: Q&A
1. How has The Magdalen House (TMH) played a role in your recovery?
There is no question my involvement with The Magdalen House has led to my recovery and continues to do so to this day. Before I came to TMH I believed that alcoholism wasn’t really a disease. I was fully convinced that the word ‘disease’ was used as an excuse for people who had poor self-control, made poor choices and desperately wanted a scapegoat to blame for their behavior surrounding alcohol. This line of thinking extended to me as well. I had little or no self-control. I consistently made poor choices. I harbored little or no regard for the negative consequences endured or inflicted as a result of this character defect.
In short, I was a bad person who made bad decisions. “Y’all just don’t get it. I’m like, really sick. I have a disease, right?” I used to say sarcastically to my ever-dwindling group of friends as I chugged whisky straight from the bottle with a wine chaser because I was a ‘classy lady’. Yeah. It wasn’t until I was sitting in the meeting room at TMH when I first heard the truth about alcoholism, what it is and what it isn’t, that it is in fact a disease, that it’s chronic, that it’s progressive, and that it is an affliction of both the body and the mind. My uneducated opinions were rendered invalid. Who was I sitting smugly with my bachelor’s degree in art history to question the legitimacy of the medical and scientific fields I asked myself? No one was the answer to my query.
2. Why do you tell women to go to Maggie’s?
While I could relay a glowing report regarding the subtle, seemingly supernatural spiritual awakenings and revolutionary changes experienced by women every day at The Magdalen House to women in or seeking recovery, I usually don’t. I tell women in or seeking recovery to go to TMH for one simple truth: Maggie’s saved my life.
3. How are you involved at The Magdalen House today?
Today my volunteer work at TMH is varied. In the last seven weeks alone, I’ve put in well over three hundred volunteer hours. I have stepped in for or am regularly scheduled to do the following:
- chair meetings at TMH and outside the house
- guest speaker at meetings at TMH and outside the house
- administration work for the front desk at TMH
- transport volunteer for TMH
- housekeeping volunteer at TMH
- sponsor women in and out of TMH
- donate food, clothes, shoes and household items for TMH
- Trader Joe’s volunteer at TMH
- supervise overnights at TMH every Friday night
- and of course, I attend meetings at TMH and outside the house
When TMH calls, my answer is a resounding “Yes! I’ll be there! Thank you!”
If you’ve been to The Magdalen House, you’ve met a Maggie’s volunteer. We’ve said how great they are over and over again, but they really are the best. From our Board Members and Leave a Legacy Dinner Committees, to Social Detox Alumna and Peer Recovery Participants helping as Overnights and Front Desk Admins, our active, dedicated volunteers are the reason we are able to not only create, but sustain, a recovery community for alcoholic women.
In the first half of 2019, 380 volunteers donated 8,660 hours; 14% of those volunteers were Social Detox Alumna, like Bridget, who donated 54% of total hours.
We’d love for you to join us – regardless of who you are, we have volunteer opportunities for you at Maggie’s.