ORANGE — For the love of the Lord.
That is the inspiration for Connie Velasquez, a volunteer at the Orange Christian Services located at 2518 West Park Avenue in Orange and the American Legion Post 49 located at 108 Green Avenue in Orange.
Connie, 62, has volunteered at Orange Christian Services for approximately five years and at the American Legion for three years.
“The pantry you see filled in the mornings are empty that afternoon,” Connie said. “The need in Orange County is that great.”
When Connie is not taking care of her husband, who also volunteers, her son, 2 dogs, a cat and her fish, she is found at either Orange Christian Services (OCS) or the American Legion.
The American Legion helps keep a toy box filled for the children at OCS.
“We don’t want to forget the children,” Connie said. “They are our future.”
Connie helps in receiving donations for OCS and assists in sorting donated clothing by size.
“It is amazing at how few men’s or boy’s size clothing or shoes we get,” Connie said. “Or diapers, we never have enough large diapers.”
Connie started volunteering through her church. At the time, Little Cypress Baptist Church encouraged the congregation to have at least one person form the church each day at OCS. A couple of years later a friend mention the American Legion to her as she is a veteran.
Connie served in the Airforce during the Vietnam conflict.
“So many people are willing and wanting to volunteer,” Connie said. “They just don’t know how to get started.”
When one asks Connie why she volunteers, she will smile and say, “For the love of the Lord.”