Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – Lawson-Neel Medbank

Name: Thomason Duncan
From: Valdosta, Georgia
Grade: College Junior
School: Valdosta State University
Votes: 0

Thomason B. Duncan

Valdosta State

Valdosta, Georgia


Through my community service, I have adopted a motto, which I often
share with people when they thank me: “Don’t pay it back, pay it
forward”. If I were selected to receive the DMVedu scholarship for
the academic year 2016-2017, I would “pay it forward” to my
community through community service. Located in Thomasville, Georgia
is a non-profit organization called the Lawson-Neel Medbank. The
Lawson-Neel Medbank was founded by the Methodist church in
Thomasville, but it is sustained year-to-year by grant funding. The
Medbank serves the local community by working with local doctors,
pharmacies, and drug companies to provide medications to clients that
otherwise couldn’t afford them. As a non-profit organization
relying solely on grants, the Medbank can only afford to employ three
employees. The workload surpasses the ability of three employees,
which leaves them reliant upon volunteers.

The Lawson-Neel Medbank is particularly dear to my heart, because my grandmother who
lives on a fixed income is one of the many elderly citizens
prescribed daily medication. The relationship I have with my
grandmother is unique, and very special. I plan to express my passion
for the Lawson-Neel Medbank in the upcoming academic year by
continuing my volunteer work, which will take place once a week
during the school year. I have currently pledged to commit 80 hours
of service to the Medbank before December, and I have given over 100
hours to the organization to date.

As I mentioned before, the Lawson-Neel Medbank was founded by the local Methodist
church, where it received a generous staff of volunteers. Many of the
volunteers share my passion for the community service provided by the
Lawson-Neel Medbank; and that passion is prevalent throughout the
elderly community, as the majority of them can relate to the
individuals being served. The Medbank is over ten years old now, and
many of the volunteers, being primarily elderly, have either passed
away or are no longer in the condition to give their time to serving
the community. As the years go by, the client list at the Medbank
grows, but the number of volunteers unfortunately dwindles; which is
where I come in.

Now that you know a little about the Lawson-Neel Medbank, and why it is important to me,
I’m going to describe exactly how my time is put to use. When
someone hears about the Medbank, the application process involves
them proving their income, and getting verification from their
medical provider. The clients must submit their verification
documents each year, and after so many years the paperwork must be
transferred to an electronic format and the hard copies disposed of.
I make spreadsheets containing client information, and dispose of the
hard copies. I sometimes call doctors’ offices to confirm patient
refill eligibility, and I organize the office. The employees are busy
assisting new patients, verifying their identities and incomes, and
hosting new-patient interviews at the local health department. My
volunteer hours reduce the employee work load, and ensure we can
serve our clients in a timely manner.

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