About Marilyn Gardner Milton
Marilyn Gardner Milton MA is a woman who has her fingers in many different pies in life. One of her greatest passions is the volunteering and advocating for both children in need as well as dogs. She helped to create the Ebenezer Foundation which works with children in need in Zambia. With the motto “A Place to Call Home and Someone to Call Mother”, the Ebenezer Foundation is dedicated to providing education, healthcare, and housing for orphans in Zambia. This position allows Marilyn to bring her years of experience in primary education and distance learning to the organization, providing them with advice and support as to how best educate the children.
Marilyn Garner Milton | Volunteering & Administrative Experience
The Ebenezer Foundation was created to support the work of the Ebenezer Child Care Trust, an organization that originally focused on feeding the orphans in Zambian cities a few times a week. However, as time passed the creators realized that there was more they could do to help the children in need. They partnered with the Cavalry Church in Livingstone and began renting houses so that they could offer a stable environment and family-like situation for the orphans. The Foundation currently rents 4 houses and 1 office building where they provide housing and house parents for the orphans as well as education and medical facilities for both orphans and all children in the community. Marilyn Gardner Milton MA was hired to join the Board of Directors so that she could bring her expertise in education and distance learning to the organization.
While Marilyn Gardner Milton MA has focused most of her volunteering efforts on children in need, she has also always been an advocate for dogs. Throughout her entire life, Marilyn has lived with dogs. As a child she was raised in a household that always had at least one dog in it and she tried to maintain that number throughout all periods in her life. And throughout all of her experiences with educating and administrating, her dogs were always there with her. The more she worked in high-intensity situations, the more Marilyn realized that her dog was useful for both companionship as well as a natural stress reliever. While Marilyn’s life is taken up mostly by her work and her family, she has never forgotten about her love for dogs and continues to live with one to this very day. Due to her experiences, she is fully aware of the therapeutic effects that dogs can have on people in stressful and taxing situations.
Do you have a desire to make a difference in your community through volunteer work? Sometimes it can be difficult to know where to begin. Here are some tips to help you find volunteer opportunities that are perfect for your unique skills and interests:
- Consider what you’re passionate about.
Before getting started, figure out what you’re passionate about and what area of work you are most interested in. Consider your personal strengths, as well as the issues that are most important to you. After you become clear about what matters to you, choosing an opportunity will be easier.
- Consider your community’s needs.
Every community has different needs. Do some research about your area and try to discover what the most pressing problems are. Does your city have a high homeless population? If so, you can volunteer at a local shelter or food bank. Maybe you live near a children’s hospital and can offer your services there. Try to find an organization or an opportunity where you feel like you’re needed.
- Start small.
As you begin volunteering with a new opportunity, it’s OK to start small. Work for a few hours at a time and see how it goes. See if your values align with the work that you’re doing. After you find the right organization, you can always increase your service as your schedule allows. Be careful to avoid over-committing yourself or you may quickly become burnt out.
Did you know that there is a website dedicated to helping you find the perfect volunteer opportunity? It’s called Volunteer Match. You can start there, or even with a simple Google search like “volunteer opportunities in my area.”
You may have to try a few different things before you find the perfect place for you. No matter what route you choose, you can expect your life to be enriched as you add value to the lives of others.
Who knows what exactly it is, but we can all agree that there is a particular type of magic in the air during the holidays. People gain patience, offer compassion, and smiles can be seen in all directions. So naturally, the holidays are a time when people want to give back to their community and to those who are less fortunate.
The feeling of giving back is so widespread that many states have created different coalitions, programs, and opportunities for attorneys to give back through pro-bono work. For example, just last December, over 50 lawyers came together to learn about becoming pro bono volunteers in Baltimore at the American Bar Association’s Homeless Youth Legal Network Pro Bono. Equipping attorneys of different types of law with cultural competency training on youth issues, such as trauma, homelessness, and more, the Homeless Youth Initiative (HYI) provides ongoing support to lawyer-client relationships in efforts of creating sustainable change.
In Chicago, the Young Lawyers Section (YLS) coordinates several volunteer programs for lawyers to give back to the community and gain pro bono experience. Current programs include the Dear Santa Letter Campaign, Law Week, Wills for Heroes, Serving Our Seniors, and more.
The DC Pro Bono Center has a volunteer interest form where attorneys can sign up to receive monthly emails announcing pro bono training and opportunities in D.C. The website also offers pro bono programs for individuals, firms, non-bar members, and more.
The Massachusetts Bar Association boasts the importance of volunteering to Massachusetts attorneys. On the MassBar website, there are currently 15 programs listed for attorneys to give back and increase connections within the attorney volunteer community. MassProBono.org is another website designed to help lawyers efficiently find pro bono work that fits their schedule.
The avenues for giving back are endless. Outside of enrolling in state and company programs, here are a few more ways to get involved and share the holiday spirit:
- Sponsor a cause. This could mean donating money or time to a foundation or charity or recruiting the whole firm to do some meaningful work for a worthwhile cause.
- Get On Board. A great way to give back to the community is by volunteering to serve as the legal professional for a non-profit organization. It is a fundamental role that every nonprofit need.
- Immigrants. Nothing reminds you of the importance of family like the holidays. Use those fuzzy-good feelings to help get a detained immigrant home to their family. The American Immigrant Lawyers Association is seeking volunteers to represent undocumented citizens in immigration court.
To become a well-rounded lawyer after graduation, students in law school need to study more than just the material found in the classroom. They also need diverse, real-life experience found in the form of volunteer work.
Pro Bono Work
A priceless fountain of experience comes from doing pro bono work, which is why law students are advised to seek out all possible pro bono openings with law firms, bar associations, law schools or government offices. Pro bono opportunities allow students to experience what it’s like to work with people unable to afford legal representation. This not only provides a human perspective, it lets students give back to the community as well. Some schools might even offer school credit.
Law Review is a scholarly journal that focuses on legal issues. The articles are written exclusively by law students and it gets published by the law school itself. There is generally one main journal for each law school, as well as several smaller specialty journals. The time required for writing, researching and editing Law Review can be very demanding, but also worthwhile because some employers will specifically check whether a student has Law Review on their resume during the interview process.
National Leadership Roles
Being a speaker at the National Student Leadership Conference (NSLC) is another great volunteer opportunity. It builds connections and provides public speaking experience, as well as strengthens leadership skills. It also looks great on a resume.
Bar Association Committees
Any actively enrolled law student can select up to five free Bar Association (ABA) specialty groups. Choosing a group, however, is only the first step. Once chosen, there are hundreds of group-related committees to choose from and this is where you’ll meet other law professionals who share your interests. Committees are similar to independent bar associations and have their own officers and dues. They use publications, periodicals and journals to provide continuing education for members and the general public.
Internships and Clinics
Both paid and unpaid internships can help law students gain experience and make industry connections, as well as add valuable lines to their resume. The state bar association has a law student division that offers networking contacts, information on specific areas of law, mentoring possibilities and discounted or free continuing education (CLE). All of these resources are extremely helpful when students need to find post-graduate work.
Clinics are law school programs that give students credit for working in real-world situations. Students do all the same jobs as a lawyer, such as doing research, drafting briefs and interviewing clients. Each law school has different clinics and each one offers priceless hands-on experience and insight into what specific field of law a student might want to enter after graduation.