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Volunteerism wasn’t just something Wilma Cox turned to as a hobby in retirement. It is a calling, an obligation that her faith demands of her, and it’s one she takes very seriously.
Cox, of Radcliff, has worked to serve people in need throughout her life, but when she retired from teaching at Pierce Elementary School at Fort Knox last year, she wanted to commit more time to volunteer work. Soon after she retired, she learned of Feeding America, Kentucky’s Heartland, and has spent several days a week there since.
“I believe that volunteering and helping people who are poor is a mandate from God,” Cox said.
She wants to see her life have purpose, she said. She works at Feeding America two or three days a week and works on whatever is needed at the time, be it getting food together to put in the backpacks of school children or filling boxes to be delivered to senior citizens.
While she spends a lot of time at Feeding America, she also volunteers every Thanksgiving at the dinner provided by St. Christopher Catholic Church in Radcliff.
Cox said she sees providing food to people as a special kind of work because it’s such a basic need. Hunger must be addressed before almost anything else.
“When people are hungry, they can’t function. They can’t think as well and do as well,” she said.
Tami Delaney, the development director at the local Feeding America, said in an email that Cox is a dedicated volunteer.
“I don’t ever recall a time that Wilma declined to help us when asked, particularly at a busy time or for a specific event,” Delaney said.
Cox doesn’t add extra work during the holiday season; she tries to spend as much time as possible with family. She sees helping others as an on-going mission.
She believes people are called to help others get to a point in which they can help themselves.
“Feeding America seems to be sincere about doing just that,” she said.
She encourages others to do volunteer work and not just hear of the suffering of others but not act.
“We shouldn’t just read about it, and it’s important to pray about it, but we should get our hands involved in doing something,” she said.
Kelly Cantrall can be reached at (270) 505-1747 or email@example.com.