This blog is dedicated to to Ron Watson, a client who lives at our Minoru group home. Ron is an ideal example of abilities over disabilities – recognizing an individual for what he or she can do instead of what he or she cannot do. This is a previous article published in our Star Newsletter, but an excellent one nonetheless. Ron was also featured in a full page article in the Richmond News. Below is the article from The Star:
By David Sarginson
In 1993, Ron Watson began volunteering at the Richmond Food Bank. In the years since, he’s had many jobs and has seen many changes. Some of the big changes include the increased need for food, and how much the volunteer staff has grown. When Ron started there were about 50 volunteers, today there are 125. The food bank has twice moved to a larger location, and volunteers have come and gone. In 2003, Ron was recognized with a Volunteer Recognition certificate for 10 years of excellent service.
In the beginning, Ron and a DDA (Developmental Disabilities Association) staff person would fill all the bags needed for next day distribution with fresh vegetables. Today, the same job requires 8-10 volunteers! Margaret Hewlett, Coordinator of the Richmond Food Bank says, “Ron is a model of diligence.” Ron made such an impression on Margaret that he attends barbeques at Margaret’s house to this day.
Ron can often be seen joking with the other volunteers at coffee break time and if he thinks the break goes on too long, he will call everyone back to work! At times, Ron can be seen breaking into song and dance, entertaining his co-workers and making the job fun for everyone around him.
The Richmond Food Bank has been a big part of Ron’s life, and he’s made many friends there. Every once in a while someone will come up to Ron and say, “I remember you, you work at the Food Bank!” Another staff once told me that one of the best things about her time working at Sunnymede was meeting and working with Ron. I know everyone who knows Ron would agree.