A Time for Action: A Message from Companis Executive Director, Gary Davis

Jul 5, 2022

From my conversations with many of you, I know we often feel discouraged by the political challenges of the day. It’s hard to know what steps to take to build hope, resilience, and healthier outcomes for ourselves and one another. But remember, Companis offers a path to do just that. We build community with one another, across all ages and backgrounds, which in turn offers connection and belonging. 

The “One and One and One…” photo was taken in our Seattle office. It’s a paraphrased quote from Mother Teresa, who once answered this question: “How do we change the world?” She also is quoted, “If I look at the mass, I will never act. If I look at the one, I will.”

None of us is Mother Teresa. We don’t need to be. We can simply be ourselves, because we each possess something that someone needs right now. If we only look at ‘the masses,’ we’ll be stymied. Instead, let’s focus on finding the right volunteer opportunity for you. Companis sits in a unique position to help you do that. Nonprofits come to us to fill gaps in skilled positions that help them better serve others. We see the breadth of the many needs. We can be the broker for you to find the right organization and cause to share your talents, and fill your heart. That’s been our specialty for over 28 years. 

We have more requests from nonprofits than we’re able to fill at present, and the list is growing. As the economy tightens and constricts, jobs go unfilled while demand for basic assistance grows. So your talents are needed now more than ever. (For two great examples of Companis Workers finding volunteer placements that fit their skills and interests, see the stories in this newsletter about dental care and education.) 

The agencies we partner with are often on the front lines when it comes to  hunger, housing, health care access, civil rights and much more. Consider a placement with Companis which we can tailor to your individual skills and availability. Current opportunities include communications projects, help with grant writing, direct service positions with people unhoused and those with developmental challenges, food security service roles, and tech/database expertise. Some of our positions can be done remotely, others in person, a few hours per week or something more. 

At our Companis Worker Retreat in June, we were lucky to meet in person which did wonders for our brainstorming sessions. Conversations flourished over shared meals, nature walks, and fireside gatherings. This special time together gave us the space to reflect on many ideas, including ways to encourage folks in our region to join in service to our neighbors who need us.

Such gatherings have always been Companis’ hallmark as a volunteer placement agency that provides individual and group-based support.  When I was a Companis Worker, it was in these gatherings – centered in reflection and goodwill – that I found my passion for serving our unhoused neighbors. 

Our program is our commitment to people who offer themselves in service. The heart of the Companis magic is in our shared gatherings, where curious minds and caring hearts meet up to relate their experiences about serving others. This builds bonds among the Workers and strengthens the communities they touch.

At our retreat, we heard from Workers who shared this sentiment: Sharing their skills helps solve problems. It also offers them a sense of accomplishment and makes them feel good. Isn’t that what we all need right now?



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