By Renee Massey
I know from personal experience that the members of the Cooper-Young Community Association Board of Directors have to be serious about the both the quantity and quality of volunteering they do for the organization. Many people are willing to help out now and then, but members of the board make a long-term volunteer commitment to make Cooper-Young a safer, more desirable place to live, worship, work and play.
That is why we get so excited when we have a new board member like Jeff Williams. Jeff has lived in the neighborhood for years and has helped out with LampLighter routes in the past, but he recently decided he wanted to take community participation to the next level. He has joined the Safety Committee, joined the Board of Directors (with a special interest in Safety and Beautification), helped man the CYCA table at a recent CY Farmers’ Market, and participated in a recent neighborhood clean-up. You can read Jeff’s bio on the CYCA website, www.cooperyoung.org, and you can read his thoughts on volunteering right here:
1. How long have you lived in Cooper-Young? How long have you been volunteering for the CYCA? I have lived in Cooper Young for approximately three and a half years. I have been volunteering for the CYCA for around two months now.
2. Please tell our readers about your most recent CYCA volunteer experience. My most recent volunteer experience with the CYCA was the community cleanup. We had a really good turnout of volunteers, and everyone was very friendly and helpful! Everyone had their own assignment given to them. I was assigned a section at the end of Tanglewood Street. The area was covered in trash, and it made me feel really good to get out there and help clean it up. A few of the neighbors expressed their thanks as they drove by and one even grabbed a trash can and helped! It was very rewarding to look at the area once the project was completed. It was a great way to show my appreciation for the neighborhood and make a small contribution. The experience helped me feel more connected to the community, and I look forward to the next volunteer opportunity.
3. What other CYCA activities, if any, have you volunteered for in the past? This was the first actual volunteer event I have attended aside from helping with one of the LampLighter community newspaper routes, but I look forward to more.
4. What motivates you to volunteer with the CYCA? I am motivated by my love for the community. I feel we have a really special thing going on here in Cooper-Young, and I feel it is my duty to contribute. Cooper-Young is the way it is because the residents care about it. Things don’t get done on their own. It takes people like you and me to keep Cooper-Young great.
5. What are your favorite things about Cooper-Young? What do you think makes Cooper-Young special? My favorite things about Cooper-Young are the people, the atmosphere, the art, the music, and the restaurants. We have a very unique community and I love that. People can be who they want to be and everyone is accepting. I cannot think of a more desirable place I would want to live in Memphis. Cooper-Young is the very essence of FREEDOM and INDIVIDUALITY!
The CYCA Board of Directors warmly welcomes Jeff Williams as its newest member. If you want to contribute to the magic of Cooper-Young by volunteering with the Cooper-Young Community Association just email us at firstname.lastname@example.org, call the CYCA offices at 901-272-CYCA(2922), or stop by 2298 Young during office hours. As Jeff mentioned, “It takes people like you and me to keep Cooper-Young great.”