Marcia Goldstein loves visiting Hooverwood with her two-year-old dog, Rosie. Ever since Rosie was a fits-in-the-palms-of-your-hands puppy, Marcia has been bringing her to Hooverwood. She knows Rosie’s presence is soothing and comforting—the best kind of medicine. And Rosie makes it easy for Marcia to chat with residents.
“They each have a life full of experiences, joys, and sorrows,” said Marcia. “Connecting with them on a personal basis gives me great joy.”
Marcia—this year’s Volunteer of the Year—started volunteering at Hooverwood in May 2015. Prior to her retirement, she worked as an educator at the Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation (IHC) for 26 years. Today, Marcia continues to donate her time to the IHC, volunteering as an adult education teacher and tour guide. Marcia is also a member of Congregation Shaarey Tefilla and the Hooverwood Guild.
One of her favorite events to help organize was the inaugural Hoover-Walk, which raised more than $25,000. For the summertime event, Marcia’s brother and sister-in-law flew in from Denver, and her granddaughter helped decorate residents’ wheelchairs.
“It was just so well-received,” said Marcia. “Such a terrific event.”
When asked how she felt when she received the Volunteer of the Year award, Marcia said she was reminded of her mother, who lived at Hooverwood for four-and-a-half years.
“My grandmother, both of my husband’s parents, numerous aunts, and my late mother have been cared for at Hooverwood. … I saw, on an almost daily basis, the love and care [my mother] received. Mom frequently said, ‘If you have to be anywhere, it doesn’t get much better than this.’”
Marcia—who has never kept track of the number of hours she volunteers—said the greatest reward from volunteering at Hooverwood is the relationships she has with the residents. She’s learned which residents enjoy jokes, and who appreciates a pat on the arm or an affectionate hug. And like so many residents, family members, and employees before her, Marcia considers Hooverwood to be “one big family.”