Serving Up Love at Hope Lodge

Volunteer Spotlight: Kevin Groom
Kevin Groom makes a mean home-cooked meal, and the cancer patients and their families that he cooks for each month at Hope Lodge savor every bite.

This IT expert and country music lover started volunteering with Hands On Nashville in 1997, a few years after moving here. Looking for an opportunity to meet new people, learn more about Nashville, and connect with others to whom he might lend a helping hand, Kevin got involved by helping to plan Hands On Nashville Day two years in a row.

Then in 2000, he got even more involved by serving as co-chair of the event. “This was my most memorable volunteer experience,” Kevin says. “We had almost 1,000 volunteers working on about 50 projects throughout Nashville that year. Helping to plan the event was a huge time commitment and required a great deal of effort. But on the day of the event, the members of the planning committee traveled around to several projects to take pictures and meet the volunteers. Visiting all the different sites really helped me to see just how great an impact Hands On Nashville really has on the city.”

In 2007, Kevin began volunteering regularly at The American Cancer Society’s Memorial Foundation Hope Lodge. This amazing organization provides free housing for out-of-town patients undergoing cancer treatment and their families. HON volunteers provide home-cooked meals to help make the guests’ stay more comfortable.

“I like volunteering at the Hope Lodge because it’s a great opportunity to help others and immediately see a benefit,” he says. “After spending all day at the hospital, the families really appreciate having a home-cooked meal instead of having to prepare something themselves or go out to a restaurant.”

Kevin also learns a lot from the people he serves, and says they serve as an example for how to deal with adversity.  “I’m always amazed at the positive attitudes of the patients and their families even though they are going through such tough times. “

Kevin’s advice to new volunteers? “Sign up for several different projects to see which ones you like the best. Volunteering is an excellent way to gain life experience and meet people from all walks of life.”

Interested in joining Kevin and the other cooks at Hope Lodge? Dinner at Hope Lodge occurs on the third Monday, and the first and second Wednesday of each month from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. 


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