VOLUNTEER OF THE WEEK: Jaynie Fedell is the ‘Go-To’ volunteer

Published 8:00 am Sunday, May 22, 2022

Staff Report | The Vicksburg Post

This week’s Vicksburg Post Volunteer of the Week is Jaynie Fedell, who volunteers for the St. Aloysius Track Team. Fedell is a mother of two children that she loves to incorporate into her many projects throughout her lifetime. She stated that her helpful attitude is reflected in life including in her career as a Real Estate Agent, helping others find their dream homes. Fedell’s hobbies also include participating in creative outlets such as painting and creating floral arrangements along with competing in local walk races. 

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During my son’s freshman year of high school, he signed up for the track and field team. That’s where I met Coach Mike Fields and started helping with the track team as a parent. However, this is not my first time helping out with my kid’s school activities. When my kids were in elementary school, I was always the “go-to” mom for classroom parties, teacher appreciation week, school programs and the school’s garden. This continued even when they went to Junior High and High School and I would offer to help with school musicals or sporting events. So, it’s no surprise that this is how I started helping with the track team.

How long have you been volunteering?

Volunteering has been a passion of mine all my life. I consider myself a lifetime volunteer, starting as a child by helping my mother with all her volunteer projects. In terms of volunteering for the track team, this is my second year. 

What is your favorite memory while volunteering?

I have two favorite memories. My favorite part about being an assistant track coach is how it reminds me of when I was watching my son grow as an athlete and challenge himself. Now I am able to do the same thing with these athletes and watch them grow. The exciting part is that it is not just the one individual but the team as a whole that grow when they are competing at a meet and watching everyone hitting their personal best. The joy on their faces just makes it all worthwhile.

Also as I reflect upon my years as a volunteer, the most rewarding days are when I was the “go-to mom” for my children and their friends at school. My favorite memory was when my husband and I planted two trees around the picnic area of their elementary school. It was hard work because we had to dig a large hole in the packed ground and carefully plant the 4-foot trees. I have had the pleasure of visiting over the years to see how the trees have grown and just recently I went by with my daughter and we were both amazed at how much the trees have grown. 

What would you tell someone who is thinking about volunteering?

Time is very valuable and when you can spend time helping others there is a great feeling of accomplishment. There are so many great moments as a volunteer but the overall greatest moment is the joy and happiness that I have brought to others. It does feel amazing when someone that you helped through volunteering comes up to you and says, “Thank you for being here.”

What are your activities and what do they involve?

When I just volunteered as a parent for the track team, it was simple things like getting water and snacks and giving moral support. Now as an assistant coach, one of my many responsibilities is to supervise warm-ups before practice and at the track meets, my job is to make sure that the kids do not miss their events. I was like a mother making sure they stayed hydrated and rested and comforted during practice and track meets.

What have you learned from volunteering with this organization?

I am always amazed at how much, when given that moment, the kids will always do their best regardless of how good or bad practice went and appreciate life and all the wonderful moments that it presents to us. 

Any additional comments?

I highly recommend everyone give a little of their time to be part of something. It is rewarding for everyone. I have learned new skills, made friends and left a positive impression on people.

If there is a volunteer who should be featured, please submit their name and contact information to volunteer@vicksburgpost.com.