Teen says volunteering 'really feels good'
By Zenaida Serrano Espanol
Advertiser Staff Writer
|Eric Lee volunteers at the YMCA-Central Branch and Queen's Medical Center.|
So it's no surprise that he was awarded the Governor's Kilohana Award for volunteerism in the O'ahu youth volunteer category. Lee, a junior at St. Louis School and a resident of Palolo, was one of five awardees recognized as exceptional students and outstanding youth volunteers.
Asked how he got his start in volunteer work, he responded, "I just love to help people." He also enjoys meeting a lot of different people while volunteering, he said.
Lee spends four hours every Saturday teaching children how to swim at the YMCA. On Sundays, he spends another four hours at Queen's, doing various jobs such as working with patients in the intensive care unit, assisting with patient discharges and filling in at the information desk.
While juggling school work and volunteer work may not be an easy task, Lee is able to keep a good sense of humor. When asked how he finds the time to do everything: "By not sleeping a lot," he responded, and laughed.
The Governor's Kilohana Award is presented annually to youth, adult, senior, business and project volunteers who exemplify a spirit of "living aloha." A celebration was held in honor of the statewide award recipients at Washington Place April 27 during national and state volunteer week.
Lee, who aspires to become a doctor, encourages other youths to consider volunteering.
"It really builds character because you really get to help people," he said, "and it just really feels good."