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Executive Coach George Clark Finds Volunteering at RRC An Enriching Experience

The Rosalie Rendu Center has many wonderful donors, volunteers and staff, one of whom is George Clark. George and his wife, Susan Williams-Clark, became involved with the Rosalie Rendu Center in 2000 when the Daughters of Charity purchased Carriage Manor Apartments. They have both been donors since then. Recently George wanted to participate personally in volunteer work with an organization that works extensively with families.

He works in the corporate business world, and travels a lot, so he doesn’t have a lot of time to do volunteer work. But the Rosalie Rendu Center has a flexible volunteer schedule and works largely with Hispanic families in East Palo Alto.

George has only positive things to say about the Rosalie Rendu Center.

Through his work with the students in the Conversation Club, George has had a really valuable experience. He has been able to share in the lives and stories of the women that he works with and is blown away by their diligence and commitment.

George highlights one woman whom he knows who looks after a large family but still makes tortillas for her family, by hand, every single day. He is also able to share in their concerns, and recalls how there are students who are caught between their desire to have their children speak English well, but to also speak the language of their heritage.

He points to how powerful it is to be able to have awkward conversations between himself being a mostly English speaker, and the students being mostly Spanish speakers, because it is through this process of conversing awkwardly that vulnerability happens.

To George it is a reminder of our shared humanity; it reminds him that they care about the same things, like how the kids are doing in school, and helps him to appreciate his own lived experiences even more.

George believes that the people at the Rosalie Rendu Center work in a very concrete, practical way to vastly improve the lives of the people around them.

In volunteering at the RRC, many of the skills he has found helpful in his career as an executive coach have come in handy, like listening, attending to others and having a mindset of curiosity. Not only are these skills beneficial, but they are improved through working in the Conversation Club.

Hearing people’s stories in a genuinely curious and non-judgmental way, being willing to be present and real, and appreciating the humanity shared with the people you work with are skills common to volunteering in Conversation Club and executive coaching.

Our volunteers at the Rosalie Rendu Center — where stories, hearts and lives are shared — find it a mutually beneficial experience!

Roxanne Dobson
Stanford Cardinal Course Student

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