Cheers to Christopher M. Cooley, Executive Director of Serving Other Souls and 7th Grade Mathematics Teacher
Tell us about your role as a parent volunteer leader/teacher.
I am the executive director and creator of Serving Other Souls (SOS) and a 7th grade Mathematics teacher at Franklin Regional Middle School. Serving Other Souls is a 501c3 non-profit that consists of 168 middle school students (20 percent of students at Franklin Regional Middle School belong to SOS). In the span of 3.5 years, SOS has provided funds and materials worth more than $130,000 for the needy in the Pittsburgh community.
How do you use VolunteerSpot to coordinate your parent volunteers?
SOS creates events that serve needs in our community. The majority of our volunteer jobs are intended for our middle school student-members. When we need adult volunteers, we post the specific details of the adult volunteer job, and then we use an app called cel.ly that sends text messages to all members and families that sign up for the texting app. In the cel.ly text blast, we include the URL for the volunteer job sign up for both students or parents.
Why did you decide to use VolunteerSpot?
It is the best volunteer website sign up app on the web! Keep up the great work!
What other activities are you involved in as a volunteer or volunteer leader?
As director of SOS, we create events for Thanksgiving food drives with shifts that run for a month both in the mornings before school or during lunch; homeless clothing drives with shifts set up in the same method. We use the volunteer app to keep track of bus sign ups as we take more than 200 students and their families to homeless shelters. These signups allow us to take role on the buses the morning of the event with printouts from your amazing website!
What’s one piece of advice you have for parent volunteers out there?
Get involved and do not think that your help does not make a difference, because I am here to tell you that everyone who helps makes a difference.
Anything else you’d like our readers to know about your school, event, or volunteering?
Serving others is a wrapped gift that too few people open because they are too busy or do not think they can or would make a difference. It will make a difference not only in those you are serving; it will make a difference in yourself. You will grow in virtues of empathy, fortitude, patience, and mercy. These are gifts that our world is in severe need of, so get others there and help us Serve Other Souls!!
We salute Christopher and all the other teachers and volunteers making a difference in their communities. Check out how VolunteerSpot’s Volunteer Software can save you time and stress and boost parent involvement in your school. Take a tour today!