Honey Brook Twp, PA—Keeli Looper, Director of Volunteer Services at Tel Hai, was pleased to announce Fran Atkins as the January 2013 “Volunteer in the Spotlight.” It was an interesting opportunity to turn the tables on the woman who usually crafts profiles of volunteers honored for their contributions by making her the subject of this month’s award. In an interview with Melinda Williams of The Williams Group, Fran explained that her gift for writing came honestly through her father. Described as a “man of letters,” he chronicled the lives of his family in letters to close relatives and kept onion skin carbon copies that were later enjoyed by his children.
This Chester County native attended Unionville High School and graduated from West Chester University with her baccalaureate degree in English and Master’s in History. “I’ve always been involved in writing,” Fran admitted, citing a career as a technical writer for SMS (now Siemens) of Malvern. Moving from Martin’s Corner to Tel Hai was described as a “natural choice.” Fran and husband, Harold, live on Tel Hai’s campus next door to their daughter’s in-laws. The grandparents are great friends and happily share their triplet 13 year-old grandchildren between them.
Mrs. Atkins’ contributions on campus extend beyond her writing skills. She assists in Lakeview Personal Care helping residents with varied tasks and activities—from the everyday to wrapping Christmas gifts. As a driver, she provided transportation to a funeral as well as to the Goshen Fair to offer a Meadows Health Care resident the opportunity to enjoy his blue ribbon tomatoes on display. She also actively supports the Marketing Department with special events and serves on the Peer to Peer group as a community ambassador. In the greater community Fran writes a newsletter for her church as well as the Honey Brook Community Library.
The Tel Hai community offers a wide variety of volunteer opportunities to residents and members of the greater community. The nationally accredited nonprofit, has served senior adults since 1956, and offers diverse accommodations in housing and services on campus.