April is National Volunteer Month and there are thousands of volunteers here in Central Oregon.
Dave Kyle and Eileen Riley are a husband and wife duo who have been volunteering in Bend for decades.
“My total volunteer time has been 22 years,” Riley said.
“Volunteering goes back when I was in high school and college. I’ve been in Bend for 44 years, and this is my 30th year with Bend Parks and Rec,” Kyle said.
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The two used to volunteer for Boy Scouts, and have since moved on to Juniper and Larkspur for Bend Park and Recreation (BPRD) as fitness coaches.
“It literally helps change their life. What really touches you is when they talk to you years later and say ‘what you did really helped,’” Kyle said.
BPRD says it enlists around 1,500 volunteers a year.
“We absolutely love having volunteers involved. We have volunteers that help the park district with a wide variety of programs, parks, and events,” Community Engagement Supervisor for BPRD, Kim Johnson said.
For Kyle and Rylee, it’s the satisfaction of helping others, that keeps them coming back.
“The joy I get out of it, it’s like there’s an endorphin experience you get from helping people,” Rylee said.”
If interested, you can find more information about volunteering with BPRD at their website.