Volunteer Spotlight: Jack the Woodcarver

As many of you may know, we have a full calendar of family activities here at The Ronald McDonald House in Columbus. Usually, there’s something for families to do every day at the House. Sometimes siblings and patients have a little down time from the hospital or just need to do something to take their minds off of medical stuff for a moment. Some activities are geared toward the entire family. Some are meant for just the kids. It’s all thanks to volunteers who might have a special skill or talent that they can share to those family members who might be interested.

Most Thursday afternoons, you can find “Jack the Woodcarver” set-up somewhere in the House dining room with a stack of plywood and a variety of carving tools. If they didn’t hear the announcement, some folks walking by might think he’s working on some sort of maintenance project. But Jack Paese (as others might know him) is volunteering his time to carve images of beloved cartoon characters onto these slabs of plywood for children who staying in the House and happen to be around at that time.

Every week Jack takes the time to trace a variety of cartoon characters from coloring books onto individual pieces of plywood with pencil. He then brings a variety of them with him when he sets up in the dining room. When an announcement is made over the intercom in the building that Jack is in the House, children come to choose which cartoon character they want him to carve for them. Then Jack gets to work doing the methodical task of following his outlines until he has a finished product for the child. Sometimes the kids will add to the work of art by coloring in the character with crayons.

Jack has known about RMHC of Central Ohio for a while now and he started volunteering his time and talents a few years ago when one of his friends from a wood carving club brought Jack with him to the House. He enjoyed his first experience here so much, he decided to keep coming back and sharing his talents. And now, he does it every Thursday.

Jack said his favorite part about coming to the House is getting the opportunity to meet kids as well as their families.

If you, your family, your friends, co-workers, or fellow organization members would be interested in volunteering to host a family activity at the house, click here for more information and to fill out a form to be considered for your own family activity event!