Volunteer of the Month: Christine Lane
Noelle Easterling sat down with Christine Lane, who was chosen by SPAR leadership for this month’s volunteer spotlight. Christine was born in Canada and was raised in Rochester, NY. She attended college at SUNY University in Buffalo, NY and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Design. She moved to Jacksonville 3 years ago and has been a resident of Springfield since April of 2017.
N: What kind of volunteering have you done in Springfield? I know you purchased your very own trash picker-upper to pick up trash on your street and around the neighborhood, but it goes far beyond that, right?
C: I have volunteered at Main Street and Hogan’s Creek Clean ups, at Porch fest setting up tables (which was an emergency assist) and served beer at Porch Fest and Hyperion for their St. Patty’s Day Block Party.
N: What inspired you to volunteer?
C: I started volunteering so I could meet people in a fun way. I care very much about Springfield and enjoy being involved.
N: Why do you continue to volunteer?
C:I feel like for the first time, I’m living in a neighborhood where I truly belong. I love Springfield and I want other people to love Springfield too. I recently brought a co-worker to Springfield for lunch. He was apprehensive at first, but upon arriving in Springfield was so pleased and impressed with how clean it was. I knew that this was because of the work my neighbors and I have done. I felt really proud that I made a difference in the neighborhood and my co-worker took notice.
Also, I went to school for environmental design. Typically, this is a degree one earns as an undergrad before moving on to earning a master’s in urban planning. I am thrilled that I can apply what I learned in college to this neighborhood: taking the knowledge gained and acting on those values by volunteering, being engaged, and going to meetings in the community.
N: What advice do you have for others who might be apprehensive to put themselves out there?
C: Find something you like to do and ask for ways you can get involved. It’s easy to volunteer…it can be as easy as picking up trash on your street or in the neighborhood. It doesn’t have to be something difficult.
N: What does you love most about the neighborhood?
C: One of my favorite things about Springfield is its rich diversity… it has people of every background and age. This community is very welcoming and open, and I love that.
N: Okay one more question… what has been your favorite event to volunteer at?
C: I admit that serving beer is always fun, so pouring beer at PorchFest has been the best so far. It also feels good to fundraise in support of SPAR!
Thank you to Christine and all the wonderful residents who dedicate their time and energy to making this neighborhood awesome!