Volunteers are the hands and feet behind many of the services SILO offers. Take a moment to get to know our staff and volunteers.
Staff: Silo Coordinator
Being a coordinator for SILO is what brought my husband, Andrea, and I to the quaint town of Oxford about five years ago. We joined the small group of friends who were excited about helping people in need. Since then we have enjoyed watching the group develop it’s purpose and processes.
I am recharged by time in the sanctuary of nature, enjoy reading about spiritual and social justice concerns, love to dance and wish I was an avid yoga practitioner. I especially enjoy organizing a group of volunteers like SILO- diverse, dedicated and fun-loving. It’s a joy to connect each person’s talents to a need in the community. Life is in giving deeply and truly of ourselves.
I joined SILO more than six years ago and since then I felt happy, with a purpose in my life. I love to be in the streets of Oxford and pass my time with my friends in the community. It doesn’t really matter who I meet on the street and how long I’ve known them, to me, as long as a person is willing to share a small part of their time, and give me the opportunity to be a part of their life, they are friends and become part of my SILO family.
I firmly believe that each one of us has something positive, something bright, within ourselves. It doesn’t matter what happened in our past, our present or what we are planning to do in the future. It doesn’t matter where we come from, if we did something we feel sad about, and what we think about ourselves- at any moment you should know that you have something that is and will be always positive and beautiful within yourself! I find that when I lose myself in the service of others, I grow and feel better. When I am on the street and I see my friends having enough trust to show me their bright and unique part of themselves, I feel blessed and lucky and to me, it is a moment of growth. I’m glad to be part of SILO and glad to be, like each human being in the world, good enough to love and be loved.
My name is Amber Roark and I have been a volunteer for SILO for four years. I joined SILO so I could help my community and give back. When I volunteer, I enjoy helping with monthly meals and reaching out to others in any way possible. Being in SILO has shown me that no matter how small the contribution, it still matters to someone.
I have been married to my husband for 37 happy years. I have four adult children and seven grandchildren. They are my joy. We have a farmette in Landenberg. We have rescue horses, goats, chickens, rabbits, cats and dogs.
I previously worked for three nonprofits for 17 years. I worked at NCC Department of Community Services, Girls Incorporated and the YMCA at the Meadowood School. I worked as a Director of Early Education, School Age Programming and Summer Camps and at the Absalom Jones Art Studio as a Program Coordinator. I was a grant writer, program developer and events coordinator. I was an advocate for quality Early Education something I feel very passionate about. I have always been a caregiver and a volunteer.
I gave up my career 10 years ago to care for my grandchildren and my elderly Aunt that had advanced Alzheimer’s disease for seven years. I learned so much about Alzheimer’s Disease.
I enjoy nature, traveling, watching my grandchildren play sports, learning about my Amish friends and farm life. I like to swim, dance, hike and spending time with friends and family.
My friend and I formed a nonprofit four years ago called Healing Haven. The vision is to provide wellness services to people suffering from autoimmune diseases. I have taken a Wellness Coach Course, Beginning Yoga Instructors Course and a Guided Meditation Course. The nonprofit is a work in progress.
I volunteer at the Oxford Senior Center, Oxford SILO, The Center for Joyful Living, and Kindness Counts in Oxford. I want to be a contributing member of the Oxford community. It is a caring and giving community that I am proud to be a part of.
I joined SILO because I so enjoy helping people. It’s totally gratifying for me and being such a selfless person myself, it fills me with total gratitude. I feel unique in the sense that I can utilize my culinary arts expertise to assist in the planning and coordination of the meals. I really enjoy making others feel good about themselves. Through all the friendships I incur, I am totally humble which improves my own self worth as well.
I feel blessed that I am able to help people in the community. I enjoy participating in all areas of preparing the monthly meals from serving to setting up. Seeing the smiling faces of gratitude is priceless to me!
My name is Doug and I have had the privilege of taking part in SILO from its beginning. SILO has met a spiritual need in my life and continues to teach me about the things that truly matter. I am happy to have met new friends through SILO and to be ministered to by those friendships. My wife and I recently moved to Florida, so right now I help with creating invitations for monthly meals and participate in events when we’re in town.
I am an original founder of SILO, and I currently serve as the Chairman of the Board & Leadership Team. The thing l love about SILO is that we are “loving our neighbor” through service, such as visiting our friends, offering food, finding jobs, or helping them find a place to live. It feels like worship to me, so in that way, SILO is like my church. The thing that is very unique about SILO is our great diversity. We welcome many different kind of people, and we love them all.
I’m an Oxford girl born and raised in Oxford. My parents owned the Oxford Diner for forty years where I spent a lot of my time in the back booth doing my homework, cleaning off tables and washing dishes. My parents were very involved in the community through the Rotary, Chamber of Commerce, Professional Business Women and church. For many years my father was the official Oxford Christmas decorator and hung all the Christmas lights in Oxford.
I am the mother of seven children, fifteen grandchildren and am now a foster cat mom. I enjoy playing the piano, gardening and the cat rescue, Treasure Cat Rescue. I have been a senior caregiver for ten years. I enjoy helping others.
I first became familiar with SILO when I took my granddaughter to SILO meals. We would just pop in from time to time. After a couple years, I felt like it was time I should get involved. I’ve always been one to reach out to people on my own, but I liked the organization and what it stood for and I felt like I could be useful. My involvement is mostly making decorations for the tables for our monthly meal and hosting the coffee table at the meals. I also help with preparations for Snow Ball. I’ve been involved in helping some people move into their new homes or apartments and helping them do some organizing. I’ve taken people to the bank or store and stayed with people at the hospital.
Even though I’ve grown up with and know a lot of the SILO members, I have enjoyed getting to know more members and making new friendships. I feel close to our Core Team members and I am very comfortable with our team. I feel we all work well together and we all have a gift to share.
I’ve been a part of SILO my whole life! Actually, before I was born, my mom was busy with SILO, carrying me along to all the meetings, meals and activities. I love to meet all the SILO friends at the meals- especially the silly or young ones. I tend to be a bit of disruption at all the long meetings, but love the time I get to spend with all of the SILO volunteers who play with me. I enjoy bringing a smile to the faces of our friends and volunteers and am learning how to help friends who are in need.
Kimberly Vaughn Stout
Helen M Arot
After joining the Lighthouse Youth Center volunteer crew, I became very good friends with Doug Richner and Kathy Book. Occasionally, they would leave Lighthouse events to attend SILO meals which began to get me curious about SILO. My family and I attended a Pizza In The Park event in June of 2015 and Ed Herr sang Happy Birthday to me! My husband and I have been with the group ever since!!
I contribute my boundless energy and enthusiasm to the group and also my knowledge of the Gluten Free world at meals and meetings.
I coordinate the children’s games at the meals. I’m the Recycling Queen! Esther’s and Jules’ playmate at SILO meetings! I help out with work projects and home visits.
I joined SILO because I want to make a difference. I want to talk to others I’ve never really talked to before; to make friends and help a community grow. Not everyone has the opportunity to do something for other people, like taking a day or two out of their lives to share food and stories with strangers and familiar faces. Even though I can’t make it to many meals and meetings, I enjoy the times I do have with SILO. I offer the group my sense of humor, share my opinion openly and am always friendly.
I am a 58 year old mother of four children , ages 18-33. I lost my husband last year but I was blessed with 34 years of marriage. I grew up in a family of seven children and was blessed with a mother who is a true example of selflessness. I have worked at the Oxford Post Office for 16 years and have come to love the community. I personally have been touched by so many people in my life , often at the most unexpected times. Sometimes this encounter was a kind deed but more often than not it has been through the sharing of personal stories or outlooks on life. When I first learned of SILO and what this acronym represented, I immediately felt a connection and a need to learn more about the group. What a simple yet powerful message. I would like to say that I am involved simply to offer some kindness to others but truth be told , I am the one gaining the “riches” from my encounters and involvement.
Kathy & Bruce Book
Kathy and Bruce were a part of the early SILO team when there were 5 or 6 people walking around town greeting people and inviting them to our meals. It was fun to see the look on someone’s face when handing them a flower or a box of cereal. Something so simple made their day! Both have hearts to serve the Oxford community and they are excited to see how much SILO has grown over the years!
My varied education, career experiences and interests, combined with my project management skills makes me a reliable, consistent, flexible and fun team member. I have the ability to get along with anyone and put the team / goal / project first. Plus, I play a mean bass guitar and can sing some karaoke.
I joined SILO Kathy and Bruce Book made me do it!!! All kidding aside, Helen and I know Kathy from our involvement at The Lighthouse Youth Center. Last year we were wrapping up a Lighthouse event and we were really hungry, and it occurred to us that Kathy left that event to volunteer for SILO’s pizza in the park. She had been asking us to check SILO out, so the free Pizza enticed us to do so. We’ve been involved ever since. It’s tough for me to say ‘’no’’ to Kathy Book!
Also, I wanted to get to know Ed Herr a little better as I’ve been familiar with and respected him and his family for his business success AND their philanthropy in the community. Ed and his family don’t just talk a good game -THEY JUST DO IT! They are a model of what a successful family business should do for their community and I wanted join him to be a part of that!
Besides making Esther laugh and eating free Herr’s products, I play whatever role is needed at the time. I ask Melissa and Andrea to plug me in wherever they need me at each meal / event and that has been working out well over the last year. With a small group like ours, you need to be flexible as the volunteers change from meal to meal and event to event. I also try to inject a sense of humor and fun into the group at our events and meetings.
Rachel Brewer & Conor
We are farmers who care about family, community and the Earth! Our farm is committed to growing wholesome food in a sustainable way for members of the greater Oxford/Newark area. We find our place as volunteers in SILO in growing food for the meals. Each meal we like to donate at least one vegetable and we hope to increase that involvement this year. When we plant spinach seeds, hoe carrots, or harvest celery we have the Earth on our hands and the community in our hearts. We love being a part of the big family of SILO and hope to serve for years to come!
I grew up with Ed, Flo and Clarissa and I’ve always liked to help people. I care deeply about all living things from animals in distress, people in need or even bugs that need rescued from the pool. I’ll do whatever job is in front of me- I bloom wherever I’m planted
My gift is art, and I strive to live a creative life. I’m lucky to have had the opportunities that allowed me to become an artist. It’s a blessing to me to have found a place where I can use my creativity to give back in some small way to a worthy cause. SILO is a cause I can easily get behind.
My role with SILO is mainly in dreaming up crazy ideas to make SnowBall, the annual fundraiser, a really special experience for contributors and attendees. This stretches my imagination, and allows me to play with new materials. And best of all, I’ve made some very special friends who I get to share it all with.
Both of my parents inspired me to have a life of volunteering. As a child I would run scores for the swim team since I didn’t swim well. As a young adult I took on administrative roles, reaching out to serve more, coming up with fun, creative ways to make money and reducing expenses. I want to make a change in the lives I touch. SILO is a great place to volunteer. I’m very shy and feel most comfortable when I have a job to do, but have enjoyed getting to know Silo’s clients on a more personal level.
My favorite quote is from Ghandi- Be The Change You Wish To See in the World
I have been homeless and needed a lift up from kind-hearted people- my unique perspective in SILO is that I don’t have to guess how that feels. I have always been a part of serving others from the time I was a child collecting money for Jerry Lewis, the Lions Club, my service in the Navy to being a part of Alcoholics Anonymous. SILO is a natural progression to that path. Happy to do whatever I’m able to do… just a servant in your palace.