Interview With Our Awesome Volunteer Dana

OAP: When did you start volunteering at OAP?

Dana: I’ve been volunteering at OAP since January 2013.

OAP: What made you want to start volunteering at OAP?

Dana: I had been going to OAP for a couple of years and had grown to feel very connected to the community and its mission for affordable healthcare. Wanting to give back and help them out in any way I can, and being between jobs, I found that volunteering was a great way to support OAP. Also, free acupuncture.

OAP: What do you do as a volunteer?

Dana: I do a lot of office administration type of tasks– scan new patient paperwork, answer phones, return voicemails, confirm appointments with new patients. I make sure that the waiting area is clean and presentable, refill soap dispensers, change paper towel and toilet paper rolls. I’ve done flyering and have helped out with other miscellaneous tasks as they come up. I also get to hang out with Jeff for a couple of hours each week, which is pretty cool.

OAP: What do you like about volunteering?

Dana: I like being a part of something that is bigger than me– helping a cause that I believe in, affordable healthcare. OAP serves a diverse group of people and volunteering allows me to feel like I am part of the solution while supporting a local business that does a lot of good.

OAP: What do you do when you’re not volunteering?

Dana: Professionally, I am a massage therapist and I’ll be starting grad school in the fall to get a masters in integral counseling psychology at CIIS in San Francisco. I am also a front desk volunteer at The Pacific Center for Human Growth in Berkeley. I have a photo project that features trans and gender non-conforming folks and I recently started a podcast with a friend. For fun, I enjoy going to live shows– concerts, readings, talks, performing arts; queer dance parties; cooking; grabbing drinks with friends; exercising– yoga, going to the gym, walks and hikes; wandering around Oakland; consuming everything John Waters and binge watching Netflix/Hulu/Amazon Prime.

OAP: OAP requires its volunteers to become POCA members. What do you like about your POCA membership?

Dana: Being a POCA member allows me to further support community acupuncture and affordable healthcare beyond Oakland and OAP. Membership helps new community acupuncture clinics to open and has some perks for me, too– free birthday acupuncture treatments and new patient paperwork fees are waived for all community acupuncture clinics throughout the country.

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