Wednesday, July 4, 2012

A Woman Named Helen

Inspirational People

Jan Shoop and Helen Swanson
Jan  & Helen
I consider myself very fortunate to have a friendship with this remarkable energetic woman. Helen inspires me to be a better person.  Helen is generous with both her time and treasure to those who need so much.
Like me, Helen is an octogenarian

Helen meets with other talented women at her church once a week. These women quilt, knit, and crochet all kinds of beautiful items that they give to the needy and to service men and women. They needlepoint beautiful kneelers for small churches that can’t afford to buy them.

In addition to her church work, Helen donates many hours tutoring students, both at charter and public schools. She has rescued me, when I needed help, at the school where I was a volunteer librarian. When the school moved to a new location, Helen and I built, from scratch, two libraries. Together, we opened dozens of boxes filled with books. It was hard work for two octogenarians, but also lots of fun.

I seem to have a habit of taking on too many activities at a time. I have called on Helen many times to help with those activities.  She is  always there for me, whether it was with the high school girls’ Fashion and Etiquette Club, or the younger girls’ Manners Matter Club, and certainly with the school library.

One year, I found myself with boxes of donated books that weren’t appropriate for the students.  They were stored in our garage, much to the chagrin of my husband. Once again I called on Helen. We took them to a used bookstore to trade for credits to buy books that were more appropriate. However, they didn’t want all of the books, so we took them back and they ended up in her garage. I wouldn’t blame Helen if she stopped taking my phone calls.

I hope all of you have good luck to find a friend like Helen. She is truly an inspiration to those who know her.

By Lois Jamieson

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