By Trish Prazan, Contributor
This special section of the Gateway, which features stories on UNO students and faculty who volunteer, was submitted by the School of Communication’s “News Writing and Reporting” students, under the supervision of Professor Kevin Warneke.
What does an Omaha community volunteer look like?
In Kim Kronschnable’s case, it’s a blonde-haired, blue-eyed UNO employee. Kronschnable, who works in Cashiering and Student Accounts, volunteers and coordinates door greeters at her church.
Kronschnable has been a volunteer for nine years and a member at Omaha’s King of Kings Lutheran Church for 18 years. King of Kings has a weekly worship attendance of 2,200 people for its weekend services.
As a volunteer, Kronschnable keeps a schedule of the Worship Center greeters and sends out weekly email reminders to them, as most serve once a month. She usually coordinates 43 volunteers, including an additional 24 who serve as substitutes.
She said she doesn’t “supervise” these volunteers at the services, as they typically arrive as scheduled and fulfill their duties. Four people are stationed at each of the two worship center entrances for each Sunday service.
Kronschnable volunteers because of the moral values and ethics she learned from her parents, grandparents and other relatives. She got involved in volunteering after filling out a questionnaire at church that revealed the gift she possessed was hospitality.
“I don’t know what I’d do without her,” said Tammy Matson, Connection Ministry assistant at King of Kings. “Kim is a true leader.”
In addition to her normal schedule, she also coordinates Worship Center door greeters for six weeks of Lenten services , which would be about eight people each week. She also coordinates four to six greeters for each of the two services on Holy Thursday and Good Friday.
Kronschnable said the benefit she receives from volunteering is emotional and comes with two side benefits: organization and networking.
She also attends and coordinates volunteers for every Palm Sunday. This means she handles the door greeters, as well as an additional six people at each of the three services who hand out Palm branches to worshippers as they arrive. They are mostly junior high Confirmation students who sign up to help.
“It’s meaningful to watch the students go through their Confirmation,” Kronschnable said. “I love to see the families watching and bonding.”