Every quarter we profile a current volunteer to highlight the diversity of riches you bring to MOWSF volunteer programs. We’re wrapping up 2022 by sharing a conversation we had last fall with Adriano Hrvatin, a volunteer in our Grocery Shopper Program.
What do you do for a living?
Adriano has been an attorney for the past 20 years in both public and private practice. He’s spent over a decade with the California Office of the Attorney General and is currently serving as a Supervising Deputy Attorney General under Rob Bonta.
When did you start volunteering with MOWSF and why?
Adriano and his family have been longtime holiday donors and card-makers for MOWSF, but his focus changed during the pandemic. As for many, Adriano’s work became even more stressful due to COVID-19 changes. He was fortunate to be able to take a sabbatical year to rest and recalibrate his priorities. “Others may be looking to sit on the beach with a mai tai, but I was looking for engagement”, he said.
It was during this time that Adriano connected with MOWSF. Over the course of a neighborhood walk he encountered not one but two MOWSF delivery vans, and felt this was more than a coincidence. Being part of community is important to him, and he used this siting to take action. “What else can I do to support and organization I care about”, Adriano shared. When he returned home from the walk he got online, reviewed MOWSF’s needs and applied to be a volunteer in the Grocery Shopper Program, sensing the increased isolation clients might be feeling.
Why do you volunteer? with MOWSF?
The pandemic brought the challenges of isolated, housebound seniors home for Adriano. He grew up in a close extended family and has seminal memories of his maternal grandparents through his 20s. Adriano spoke of the joy and hopeful feelings that came from sharing their lives and experiences, including the time around the table sharing meals. Being able to bring a bag of groceries to an older community member not just triggered those fond memories but gave him a way to model this community-oriented service for his two teenage sons. Adriano’s community service extends to his son’s peers as well, as he is an athletic coach for their teams. He feels called to use this opportunity to not just coach them in good sportsmanship, but to engage them in the larger community. His experience as a Grocery Shopper has created opportunities for conversation with the kids about working together to do good and about relationship-building, an element he finds central to the MOWSF mission.
“Volunteering,” he said, “has given me a way to keep my eyes, mind and heart open.”
Adriano HrvatinGrocery Shopper Volunteer
Tell me a volunteering or related story that you would like to share with those considering getting involved or pursuing more volunteering activities with MOWSF?
Adriano has a close relationship with the client he was assigned to support. They have worked out a rhythm between them that addresses her needs and allows him flexibility during and after his sabbatical. He recognizes that he is not just providing a transactional service but dealing with the uncertainties life throws them – together. Adriano pointed to one day, for example, when a work call delayed his typical shopping and arrival time at his client’s home. When he ended the call, he found several concerned voicemails from his client, checking in to make sure he was okay. The relationship and its benefits truly flow both ways. “Volunteering,” he said, “has given me a way to keep my eyes, mind and heart open.” Thank you, Adriano!