By: Danni R. Eickenhorst, Midland Division
Carol Lee Carter, 55, was diagnosed with COPD in 2002. As a career CNA for more than 15 years, the diagnosis was devastating. “I’d worked in hospitals and nursing homes all my career, and now I couldn’t lift people. I was out of work, and I wasn’t sure what to do.”
Carol found herself struggling to make ends meet once she lost her job, and she reached out to The Salvation Army in Granite City for food pantry aid. “I came in 2002 to get help,” she says, her hands smoothing out her scrubs as she speaks, “and I ended up volunteering. I’ve been here two to three days a week ever since.”
Carol’s illness requires her to keep active to keep her lungs from deteriorating, but to limit her activity. The volunteer work gives her the activity she needs, while allowing her to help others.
“I greet people at the door who come in for help, I work in the food pantry filling orders. Wherever I’m needed, that’s where I go.”
Carol notes that her favorite time to give back is Christmas, The Salvation Army’s busiest time of year. She enjoys taking part in The Salvation Army Christmas basket program and giving a hand up to those who need it most during the holidays.
“The Salvation Army will help anyone that comes through the door. It doesn’t matter who you are. They are willing to help. You don’t find that everywhere.”