Volunteer Voice: Araz

Araz-1When I moved to Oahu in 2015, the homeless and low-income population were very evident. I felt compassion for this community, but I wasn’t sure how to help or what I could even do on my own. Thankfully, through a mutual friend, I met one of the employees at Helping Hands Hawaii (HHH) who gave me some sage advice that will follow me well beyond Oahu:

“Smile, don’t ignore them and if you have time…volunteer!”

So that is what I did. I drove over to HHH in Honolulu, and they received me with open arms. I quickly began my volunteer work at the front desk and later on in the Community Clearinghouse. Some days were filled with paperwork and applications while others were more interactive with clients and case workers from HHH and other organizations. There were never idle hands at HHH, and the work was always done with good and loving hearts.

I quickly learned about this community of organizations that seek to help people who are having a rough time, and I was in awe of HHH’s motto in action, “helping others to help themselves.” Every day, each and every client that called or came in was given a listening ear, assistance, advice or at the very least a reference to another program or service in the community.

The amount of practical knowledge I am walking away with will and has already tremendously helped me to be active in the community I live in. I loved the time I spent there and would highly recommend, to everyone who asks me how they can help, to smile and volunteer at Helping Hands Hawaii.

Araz was a volunteer from February 2017 to September 2017 and helped the agency welcome visitors and clients, answered questions about programs, services and donations in person and over the phone, reviewed Community Clearinghouse applications and scheduled appointments and contacted case managers from other social service providers and partners. She and her husband, who is in the U.S. Navy, relocated to Washington. If you would like to learn more about our volunteer opportunities, visit our Volunteer page.


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