LAKEWOOD, Colo. — Like the words on her shirt, "Change The World For The Better" is a mantra Barbara Engemoen lives by. For her, that change starts right in her own community.
Engemoen is one of the dedicated volunteers at Benefits In Action, a 6-year-old nonprofit that connects people with healthcare and living resources in Colorado. Nat Timmens, warehouse manager for the nonprofit, said it connects people with government programs such as SNAP, Medicaid, Medicare, social security, rental help, and more.
Engemoen began giving her time to the nonprofit three years ago.
"I started out calling people who were isolated during the pandemic, to see how they were doing, that kind of thing. And after about three months of that, I wanted to do something a little more active so I came into the warehouse," Engemoen said.
That's where you'll find her every Thursday morning, boxing up food the mobile food pantry which the nonprofit started when people were stuck at home during the pandemic.
"It’s very rewarding and people are so grateful. You really feel like you’re making a difference," Engemoen said.
Engemoen's service work doesn't stop here. She also runs a Lakewood food pantry for Food Bank of the Rockies and volunteers for Dress for Success and the Senior Resource Center. She often rallies her husband, Bill, to volunteer too.
"I am a direct recruit of my wife," he said. "She’s the best thing that ever happened to me. She’s a wonderful spirit."
Changing the world doesn't always take some grand gesture. As Engemoen knows, it's the little acts of service that can have the biggest impact.
"I feel like I’m doing something that makes a difference. Secondly, I get to work with wonderful volunteers and make great friendships, and great connections," Engemoen said.
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