TeamNEGU Blog

We could not fulfill Jessie’s mission without the help of incredible volunteers around the nation. Check out this story on one of our incredible volunteers that is helping us spread joy!

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Connie (on the right), has been with the Jessie Rees Foundation shortly after they began in March 2012. She has a huge heart for the foundation and is an imperative part of our operations.

Q: How did you first hear about Jessie and her story?

A: Eric was a Pastor at Saddleback, which is where I go to church. I truly didn’t understand what he was doing behind the scenes relative to starting the JoyJars, but I watched Jessie’s memorial service online and then I decided this is where I want to be volunteering my time. When the JoyFactory was still in Rancho Santa Margarita I began volunteering, and I’ve been here ever since.

Q: What duties have you had while volunteering at the Jessie Rees Foundation?

A: When I started it was learning how to stuff a JoyJar. This is where I initially started and then slowly they began to add more toy opportunities for the kids so my jobs slowly transformed. I went from stuffing individual JoyJars to creating Power Packs, which further support and encourage Courageous Kids and their families. I have been involved with Gala and Golf since the beginning, supporting registration needs. I also helped send out shirts and gear out to Courageous Kids, and merchandise that was purchased. JoAnn and I have traveled to Dallas for a JoyJar Stuffing event for American Airlines and other offsite events.  

Q: What is the most memorable experience that you have had in the JoyFactory? A: I’m not sure if I have a most memorable toy, but a Power Pack that has touched me was for a girl named Gigi and her family. Since then, Gigi has passed away, but just helping her pick out her merchandise and toys was an experience in itself. Less than two months later she was gone. To have a one-on-one, to be able to say that’s really a child that is fighting cancer and being able to bring a smile to their face is priceless.

Q: If you could choose a crayon color to describe yourself, what would it be?

A: Blue. It was my favorite color before I even began volunteering at the Jessie Rees Foundation, which makes it a perfect fit!

Q: If you were on an island, could only bring 3 items, what would they be?

I would bring sunscreen, a book to read, and my kindle.

Q: If you could be a superhero, what would you want your superpowers to be?

A: This isn’t necessarily a superpower, but I want to be more generous. More generous with my time, as far as giving back. That’s where I am in my life, but to be able to give more to others and in addition to the Jessie Rees Foundation in other ways too.

Q: Would you rather…have hiccups for the rest of your life or always feel like you need to squeeze, but not able to?

A: Always feel like I need to squeeze, but not able to.

Thank you, Connie for helping us spread JOY! NEGU!!!