Volunteer Spotlight: Sheryl Milch

Sheryl Milch is a generous, vivacious young woman who was born with Down syndrome. She was raised with the notion that she must help others, a lesson that stuck with her upon her high school graduation.

With the help of a mentor, Sheryl began volunteering at Anathan Club Adult Day Services, a program offered by the Jewish Association on Aging (JAA). Anathan Club provides a supportive, structured environment that helps older adults remain socially active while living at home.

Over her past 10 years of community service, Sheryl has become an integral part of this program and her volunteer career has blossomed. She now comes to work daily, providing a tremendous amount of tender loving care to the men and women she serves.

“Sheryl is truly a unique and memorable young woman,” said Sharyn Rubin, Director of Resident and Community Services at the JAA. “She is outgoing, unencumbered by any differences others may perceive, and a joy to be around.”

Sheryl (right) and Lori O’Brien, Director of the Anathan Club (left)

Sheryl (right) and Lori O’Brien, Director of the Anathan Club (left)

Her daily responsibilities include assisting with programs, helping set up for lunch, and socializing with participants, who have come to adore her.

“We depend on Sheryl for so much,” Rubin said. “She embodies the essence of volunteering, proving that all of us can, and should, give back. It is our obligation.  Through Sheryl’s example, we are all reminded that each of us can make a difference.”

Sheryl learns a great deal from the staff and they, in turn, learn from her as well. She attacks her assignments with energy and has become an invaluable, and valued, part of the Anathan Club community.

“Her zeal for life, her enthusiasm, and her commitment to her work all cause her to be a favorite among staff and participants alike,” Rubin said. “Sheryl makes us all aware of the sunshine. She sees goodness and happiness and her outlook is not only refreshing but highly contagious.”

For more information on volunteer opportunities at the JAA, contact Sharyn Rubin at srubin@jaapgh.org.

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