Every day numerous individuals spend their time volunteering for Fort Bragg. Soldiers, Family members, retirees and youth log thousands of volunteer hours here annually.
For the past five years, Alice Stephens, a retired Sgt. 1st Class and the Army Volunteer Coordinator at Fort Bragg, with help from her team, has been the center of volunteer management.
Stephens oversees all of the volunteers and volunteer organizations on Fort Bragg. She is able to help make sure these volunteers are given work that suits their interests and helps them get recognized for their efforts.
“I love my job,” said Stephens. “I get to see new people every day and find out who they are and what they like to do.”
Stephens’s philosophy is to help each volunteer work in an area that will not only benefit the organization but also benefit the person.
“If the volunteer is doing something they are interested in then they will want to continue to volunteer and enjoy doing it,” added Stephens.
Stephens also travels the post, giving monthly training on the Department of the Army Volunteer Management Information System).
The VMIS is a World Wide Web-based volunteer tracking system, that allows volunteers to track their hours, create resumes and manage their data from anywhere in the world.
“It is so important to track your volunteer hours,” said Stephens. “A lot of times volunteers don’t want to track hours or don’t feel that it is important but in reality it can be the one thing that gets them a paying job.”
Tracking volunteer hours is a way to show what a volunteer has done for the community and a way for them to gain experience in a certain career field, she added.
Another aspect of her job that she loves is being able to be a part of the volunteers getting recognized for their good deeds. Stephens hosts the award ceremonies and said that those ceremonies bring her great satisfaction.
“It’s nice to be able to reward people for doing great things and being involved in the community,” said Stephens. “Seeing the joy on their faces and seeing how happy they are for being recognized, is such a good feeling.”
Stephens spent 24 years in the military, traveled the world and is now working her dream job she said.
“Every day it is something new,” said Stephens. “I am so grateful to get to wake up every morning and look forward to doing my job. I have such a great team and we all work so well together. What more could you ask for?”