Thank You, Volunteers

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Here are BWI Greater Austin, we consider our incredible educators and volunteers that help facilitate and teach babywearing meetings FOUR times a month, our greatest asset.
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It’s easy to see that we have a dedicated team of babywearing educators here in Austin.Every month hundreds of babies are lovingly fit into carriers by our certified Volunteer Babywearing Educators.
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Each one of the Volunteer Babywearing Educators has performed the necessary training, passed at least one examination, and does continuing babywearing education.

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Hundreds of babywearers are taught to use their own baby carrier and hundreds more are fitted to rent one of the hundreds of carriers from our library.

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We will easily have over 1000 carrier rentals every year.
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That’s a lot of worn babies…
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being helped by a lot of educators, and for that we are thankful.  Deeply, profoundly, eternally, grateful.
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But it doesn’t stop there.

Each one of those rentals is expertly handled by a member of our Admin Staff.
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Before you even get to try on that rental, a volunteer has carted it to the meeting.
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And before that, someone has checked and washed that carrier to make sure that it is safe and clean so that it can safely, securely, and hygienically snuggle your baby.
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Each member of our Admin team has been trained in the various softwares, making sure sign ins, memberships, and rentals run as smoothly as possible.
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Ever turn in a carrier late? We have a rental coordinator who works on that and makes sure that ALL our carriers are returned.
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Where some of our volunteers are great at writing blogs that are void of educational content (but heavy on wit and sass)…
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others have actual skills!
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There are people who work behind the scenes, tracking down late rentals, managing our finances,branding, marketing events, fundraisers, outreach events, etc.  There are looooooooots of spreadsheets and databases involved and enough math to make my head hurt.
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Oh yeah, the outreach events… those take planning, coordinating, funding, and follow-through.
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That is in addition to the fact that we will do almost anything for  FUNdraising…
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AND the fact that there is a professional photographer at almost every one of our meetings to make sure those baby-snuggles are captured perfectly!
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We even make all our own decorations!!
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On top of it all, these same volunteers also devote countless hours to online Q&As and monitoring our facebook discussion group.
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In all seriousness, I don’t think that the average meeting attendee knows how much energy goes into making this machine run smoothly… and that is just at the local level.
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We’re lucky here in Austin that many of our leaders are also leaders at the National level and hold positions on various BWI National committees. On top of working, raising a family, maintaining a partnership, and volunteering locally, these babywearers then devote additional time, talents, and toil to make sure that the National organization grows, thrives, and runs smoothly.
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All this to say that we are thankful for the members of our community that make Babywearing International Greater Austin even possible.

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Sometimes when I think of the countless hours and personal sacrifice that goes into this endeavor, I wonder why we still do it… and the answer is that it’s the people with which we share this adventure that make it worthwhile.
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Thank you, volunteers. On this Thanksgiving, we are profoundly grateful for you, your sacrifices, your family’s sacrifices, and the love and attention you pour into every worn baby here in Central Texas and beyond.
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