Town Talk Features

Reaching Out: David Sanders

meet david sanders of fenton

How long have you been a volunteer?
I think the very first thing I volunteered for was a race in 2014.

What interested you in this particular cause?
At first, it was kind of accidental. I’m a professor at Saint Louis University, and everyone at the university does a lot of community service, especially students. I was looking for a service project to do with my class, and Easterseals Midwest’s race worked with my schedule. I took 30 students to volunteer at that first race. I got to know the people involved, and they asked if I wanted to serve on the race committee to represent SLU. It is such a great organization; I wanted to devote more energy and time to helping however I could.

What kind of volunteer work are you involved with?
I’ve worked on a variety of different projects, like Run, Walk and Roll for two years and the golf tournament. From time to time, I’ve gone into the office and done clerical work. I try to bring in other people as much as possible. Easterseals is my go-to when I volunteer with my students. I’m very passionate about the clients and people we meet. I’ve done some mass student activities like organizing mailing events to send out wish lists and thank-you letters to volunteers. Last spring, I brought my son and 80 students to paint Easterseals’ facilities. The project saved the organization enough money to hire care and support staff for some of the families it serves. I try to find things that get other people involved, including my son. I think it’s important for him to understand and learn the behavior of giving. We have so much that we can give of ourselves for the betterment of society. So many people focus on themselves or on the bad things, not on helping. I don’t want him to accept that. I want him to go out and make a change by giving to others. It’s very valuable. There is happiness to be found in helping.

If you could do anything for the organization, what would it be?
I would ensure that it has updated, prepared facilities. Easterseals Midwest has grown so much, and it would be nice to provide the organization with a better place to serve its clients.

In the words of Easterseals Midwest
“Dave is passionate about making the world a better, more inclusive place for people of all abilities. Throughout the year, he volunteers at events and engages hundreds of SLU students in our mission. Dave’s energy, optimism and hard work have made him a leader among our volunteers and an invaluable member of the Easterseals Midwest community.”

Strauss Peyton is a proud sponsor of the T&S Reaching Out Awards. Know a volunteer? Nominate them to be featured at townandstyle.com/reachingoutawards or email tellus@townandstyle.com for more information.

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