Linda Jacobs, a VA Benefits Advisor for the CMVE on the Portsmouth Campus, finds inspiration for charity work all around her. She and her husband support dozens of charities each year.
As a member of the Classified Association, she’s one of the college representatives tasked with identifying an annual community service project every year as part of TCC’s ongoing efforts to grow our local communities through service and civic engagement. In the past, she’s helped coordinate employee canned good donations to the food bank and school supply drives for children in need.
Identifying just one worthy cause is hard for Linda, she’s the first to admit, but she knew the organization she wanted to recommend this year as soon as she saw it.
“I read an article in the Chesapeake Clipper,” Linda said. “And it mentioned the Help and Emergency Response (H.E.R.) Shelter, a domestic violence support center, which had just expanded to Chesapeake. The article surprised me because it said that one of the busiest times of year for domestic violence shelters was during the holidays. It broke my heart.”
The Classified Association reached out and H.E.R. Shelter outlined some very specific needs: tissues, toilet paper, paper towels, dish soap and laundry detergent. Donations were solicited from classified staff in the weeks leading up to Classified Staff Professional Development Day.
“I am passionate about charitable giving,” Linda said. “I was a member of the U.S. Marine Corps for 22 years. As you progress up the pay scale you take on more responsibility and it just becomes a natural thing to look out for others – to ‘take care of your troops,’ so to say.”
And while she gives money out-of-pocket to various TCC Educational Foundation causes, “$5 or $10 out of my pocket when I have it,” Linda’s real motivation is fostering a community of compassion at the college.
“I know that not everyone is as fortunate,” she said. “That’s why I want to do as much as I can for others on campus and the community. Giving back is so many things; sometimes it’s supporting a cause like H.E.R. Shelter and sometimes it’s just about making sure that the work-studies in your office have a good meal.”
As for the H.E.R. Shelter drive?
“Our employees were quite generous,” Linda laughed. “I think the photo (above) shows that it was a successful event!”