Honoree: John Boslet
Honored by: Families Forward
Cause Area: Hunger & Homelessness
John Boslet first became involved with Families Forward in the 1990s when his wife, Jacquie Boslet, became a volunteer with Families Forward. With some encouragement from his wife, John started to volunteer himself in 2005. The more that Jacquie told him about the wonderful things that Families Forward was doing to help people in need in their community, the more he wanted to find a way to help. In particular, when John saw firsthand the great joy that occurred with families when they received food or housing, he knew that Families Forward was an organization that he wanted to be connected with and support. John commends his wife for her volunteer support of Families Forward, and he states that her dedication to Families Forward exceeds his. His support is extremely valuable as well, and continues to grow every year.
John has supported Families Forward in many ways over the past 10 years. Every year, John volunteers with us for our Thanksgiving Basket Distribution event. He is one of our lead parking volunteers where he directs the safe flow of vehicular and pedestrian traffic within our parking lot and our surrounding streets. This is a crucial role as we have over 500 clients, volunteers, and agency partners who visit our Program Center on this day. As such, our parking lot get s extremely crowded with cars and people, and directing vehicles and people is tremendously important for safety. John understands the importance of his role and always has a smile on his face, rain or shine. Additionally, John works with Jacquie to organize and coordinate food drives at Irvine Presbyterian Church. John also participates in our Community Wide Food Drives, which take place once in the spring, summer, and fall. These events are crucial with allowing us to continue to serve our families with food year round. John volunteers with us for these events out in the community at our partner grocery stores. He tells shoppers about our mission and asks shoppers to donate food items for our food pantry. He also drives around and collects the food donations at various grocery store locations and delivers them to Families Forward.
In addition to our food program, John has supported our housing program and the operations of our organization as a whole. Several years ago when we were in our prior location, John organized a work party to paint the inside hallways of our building. This was a huge help as it helped us to save costs. John also helped move furniture and decorate one of our housing units before a family moved-in. Most recently, John has assisted and supported us with a big project at our Families Forward location related to his professional expertise. John developed a conceptual design for a new exit driveway from the Families Forward site. This new driveway will be put in place in the very near future. John assisted Families Forward in the successful submission of a grant application for the driveway. He also coordinated the processing and eventual approval of the design concept with the City of Irvine, as well as coordinated the final design and processing with the City to obtain all necessary permits needed for construction. The driveway project is something we wanted to do ever since we moved to our new location in 2013, and it has taken a lot of time, dedication, and persistence from John and our staff to get approval and the project started. He has been instrumental with this project and we are forever grateful to him for his hard work. We would not have been able to do it without him!
The ways in which John contributes to Families Forward are numerous! We greatly appreciate his dedication and support of our mission. We believe that volunteers like John who give unconditionally to our agency and the families that we serve are hard to come by, and he is certainly an asset to our mission and organization!