Carolyn Bogott: Every day of work is a joy

Published 5:54 pm Tuesday, April 4, 2023

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Stacy Wisemore says that she loves every day of her work at the Salvation Army as office manager/volunteer coordinator, as well as occasionally filling in as case manager. 

“I have found where I really want to be,” she said. “At the end of each day, I know I have helped at least one person.”

 Her eyes light up as she describes all the things that she does in those roles. Bruce Richardson, one of her longtime regular volunteers said, “Stacy is the kind of employee any business would love to have. Besides doing a range of tasks as her job has grown, she has been able to do many it hasn’t included, from driving the trucks, to cooking evening meals, to guiding the social needs when others were unable.  She doesn’t shy from service.” 

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Modestly, Stacy said that she does whatever needs to be done, just as the other Salvation Army staff do.

This versatile woman loves that she can be a part of helping people in so many ways.  Those ways include providing hot meals at the center, the food shelf, short term housing assistance, (that is first month’s rent assistance, and utility assistance), transportation (gas cards for out-of-county medical appointments), prescription assistance, and vouchers for clothing and household items at the Salvation Army Thrift Store.  In addition, the Salvation Army can provide referrals for financial coaching, day care needs, and job search help.

Stacy’s favorite part of her job is visiting with clients. She is on the “front line” to reach out to those who come with many needs and issues.  Everyone has a unique story. She regrets that many members of our community are quick to judge others and are not welcoming to all. 

She also notes that, unfortunately, our homeless population is growing. And only with its recent growth, has attention been given to that issue by community leadership.  The Salvation Army has long been aware of homeless people in Austin and has advocated for help. Stacy is glad, at last, this is being addressed by civic leadership, as well.

Helping people has always been a part of Stacy’s job choices.  She first worked in assisted living and nursing home care, and for 16 years ran a home day care for children. Her work for the Salvation Army began with volunteering at the thrift store. Then she moved to office work and later supervision of the donation center. Next, she became assistant manager of the thrift store, before taking her current position.

Recently there were some members of the small Salvation Army staff off work for medical issues. Judy Bjorndal, a Salvation Army board member states: “Stacy cheerfully stepped in to maintain programming, community meals and assistance tasks during the absence of coworkers for an extended period of time. Plus, she does a great job at her regularly assigned duties. She has committed lots of time and energy to keep the SA running smoothly.”

Many of us only think of the Salvation Army work when we see or help with the kettles or angel trees during the holidays. We tend to overlook all the work that is going on day in and day out.  How fortunate we are to have this organization working in Austin and to have Stacy Wisemore giving her all to this support system for some of our most vulnerable community members.

For more information about the Austin Branch of AAUW, contact Sue Grove  or Carolyn Bogott The American Association of University Women, now AAUW, is open to anyone who has completed a two-year degree or beyond.  AAUW welcomes men who support our objectives and there are student memberships available. AAUW has been empowering women since 1881.  We support equity and education for women.  Scholarships are offered, as well as help in litigation in cases dealing with sex discrimination.  We are the most important and highly respected research and lobbying organization dealing with women’s issues such as equal opportunity and job equality.