On May 6, 2017 I had the honor of volunteering to assist the GLAAD Media Awards. This crucial ceremony "earns more then 6.2 Billion Media Impressions per year, opens hearts and minds by amplifying images and messages, and accelerates acceptance for LGBTQ people." This was the 28th annual event held at the New York Hilton Midtown. Honoree's this year included Debra Messing and Billy Porter. Thousands of celebrities, film - makers, actors, and corporate attendees ushered into the beautifully designed Mercury Ballroom.
My specific role was that of check in, greeting, and registration. Essentially, my team was the first seen to help give access to this historic and important event. I met some amazing individuals. Those that not only support our community through their films, music, generous purchase of tickets, sponsorship and actions in media but also my fellow volunteers and GLAAD staff.
One thing really struck me from Carrie Rachel Dean, she said "Time is our most valuable commodity and we are grateful you are giving it to GLAAD." Gratitude continued from Stokes and Dean as well as the entire GLAAD staff that night, during GLAAD Media Awards and afterwards on Twitter. I am actually in awe of how much everyone said thank you for your help.
Gratitude is of the upmost importance in my life, my day and my business. I am grateful every morning I wake up. I make sure to tell my significant other, my family, friends and clients something I am grateful for every time I see them. I also made sure to tell my fellow volunteers how grateful I was to have them. Even the guests of the ceremony, I expressed my gratitude for their involvement in the show and the community.
Also, working behind the scenes also can allow you to generate a deeper bond with fellow volunteers and staff that you would not normally get. When you all work for a common goal you have a commonality that a ticket can not buy. You also know that you are genuinely helping and that feels good!
You can volunteer for whatever reason is important to you: helping, making an impact, new friends, new business etc. Just do it! It is a once in a lifetime (or year- as is the case with annual events) that is undeniably special.