Why we volunteer: Fighting stigma

Steve and Sascha Frowine with Chris Weinbrenner, left, volunteer coordinator at WNCAP

Steve and Sascha Frowine have volunteered at the Western North Carolina AIDS Project for five years. The organization provides equitable access to care and works to reduce harm from HIV, hepatitis C and drug use.

What inspired you to volunteer? 

Over the years we have had friends and colleagues that have been affected by the scourge of AIDS and felt compelled to take action in their memories. We have seen the isolation, rejection and stigmas attached to them that have just added to their pain. We felt compelled to do at least something to show them that we empathize with their struggles and hope we can help in some small way.

What have you learned about the individuals you serve?

That they are folks just like us who many times have unknowingly endangered their lives by exposing themselves to this insidious disease. Most are very grateful for the help WNCAP lends to make what they are going through more bearable.

What has been the greatest reward?

Getting to know the folks and learning more about AIDS. It is most encouraging that with the right treatment, provided by WNCAP, this disease can be contained and managed.

What advice would you offer those thinking about volunteering?

WNCAP is a pleasurable organization to work with. They are totally dedicated to their clients and supportive of their volunteers. We have worked as volunteers for various nonprofit organizations and we can unequivocally state that this is one of the best for serving its clients and supporting its volunteers. Volunteering with them has been a truly rewarding experience.


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