It’s safe to say Tellico Villagers are an ambitious bunch and a volunteer spirit runs through their veins. Really, it’s just who they are: a group willing to give anything for their neighbors and do anything to make the community the best it can be. There are hundreds of stories and examples of dedicated time and resources. Pinpointing just one example won’t sum it up, but it provides a small glimpse into the core, the values and what Tellico Village stands for.
Long-time Villagers and determined leaders, Carolyn McDermott and Rich Seymour know the important role volunteerism plays in Tellico Village. Together they have overseen fundraising programs that have generated more than $95,000 annually in donations and dedicated countless hours to life-long learning and enrichment programs for the community and surrounding areas. Why do they do it? They volunteer to stay active and give back to the place they call home.
“If you stay engaged, you feel good and keep the brain going,” said Rich Seymour, president of The Friends of the Tellico Village Library, Inc.
That’s exactly what this dynamic duo does through their work with The Friends of the Tellico Village Library, casually known as the Friends, a powerhouse non-profit corporation dedicated to advocating, fundraising and providing critical support for The Public Library at Tellico Village. Their commitment, along with thousands of volunteer hours from fellow Villagers, to the community has brought a 6,442 square foot LEEDS-certified public library to Tellico Village with more than 35 outreach programs. Through their work, services such as a program for special-needs children, book deliveries to homebound seniors and adult education curriculum have been established and a success.
“I feel I am directly contributing to the quality of life in this community by participating and volunteering on this library board and being a member of the Friends,” said Carolyn McDermott, immediate past president of the organization. “It’s a special kind of thing to say my dues and hours are making a difference.”
As proud advocates for the library, McDermott and Seymour would encourage all Villagers to stop by, participate in a program, volunteer or even become a member of the Friends. Exploring the opportunities available is the first step to discovering new hobbies and passions.
“Find a niche, one that’s good for you,” said McDermott. “Give others the benefit of your life experience.”
McDermott and Seymour extend their gratitude to all the volunteers who have generously given more than 9,000 hours annually to the organization. Volunteer opportunities include joining the library or newsletter staff, participating in the book sale or simply making a donation. For more information visit the Tellico Village Library website.