“Helping others is the best anti-depressant you can possibly take.” This quote was recently shared with us by our wonderful volunteer, Ed Schuck. And when you think about it, this saying can really hit home. So many of us are looking to find purpose in life, but don’t know where to begin. When we take the focus off of ourselves, however, and turn to helping others, it really does make a difference in how we feel inside, not to mention the impact it has on those we serve.
A native of Portland, OR, Ed spent his career in pharmaceutical and then real estate sales. He was married to his wife Ellie for 58 years and has three grown sons, seven grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. He and Ellie lived in Sun Lakes for many years, and Ed retired from the real estate business in 2016. He currently lives in an independent living community in Chandler.
Ed started as a Neighbors Who Care volunteer in 2019. “I started volunteering because I didn’t have much to do and felt that I should be doing something more with my time,” he says. Over the past few years, Ed has been a steady and reliable transportation driver for many of our homebound clients, typically taking them to appointments one or two times a week. Ed says he gets so much out of helping our clients and really enjoys their company.
“I tell people about the 93- and 95-year old couple that I’ve driven,” Ed explains. “They’ve been married for 70+ years and are so chipper and so happy. What a nice couple!” He continues to describe a client he recently drove to her cancer treatment. “She was just a hoot! What a great lady. She had such a positive attitude. I really enjoyed chatting with her.”
“The people that we drive around, I’ll tell ya, they really pick me up,” Ed says. “Their enthusiasm for life, no matter how much they are going through, they are inspiring. And, you know what? You feel great every time you provide a service.”
When he’s not volunteering, Ed enjoys spending time with his family, as well as reading and playing cards and cribbage. But he says he will continue to volunteer with Neighbors Who Care because it means so much to him.
“I used to think that we (Neighbors Who Care) were in the good favor business. But, in reality,” he says, “we receive much more good tidings than we deliver. The thanks we receive for the rides and other services we provide as volunteers are truly great moments for us. It makes me feel good that I am able to help others who really need the help.”
Volunteers like Ed Schuck are truly treasures to us at Neighbors Who Care and to those we serve. If you, like Ed, are looking for ways to find purpose while helping fun, friendly, and positive people who need your help, we would love to have you join our volunteer team!