Beloved School Volunteer Proves Small Acts of Kindness Can Make a Huge Impact

When Michelle Yardeny started her Farmers Insurance agency, she knew the heart of her company would be giving back to the community. As a teacher’s wife, her empathy for educators led her to embark on a mission to help students and make at least one teacher smile every day.

To start, Yardeny adopted five schools, her main site being Vista PEAK Exploratory P-8. She and her Farmers team volunteer their time and talents to assist staff with daily functions, aid teachers in the classroom, help execute school events, sponsor programs and more.

“We felt at home the moment we walked in,” said Yardeny. “At Vista PEAK, we can truly see and feel the love.”

For Yardeny, expressing appreciation for the teaching profession has no limits. She goes the extra mile to organize Teacher of the Month celebrations, stock the teachers’ lounge with tasty treats and even leave gifts in teachers’ inboxes from time to time. Two years later, Yardeny is hailed as a vital and irreplaceable member of the
Bison family.

“Volunteers like Michelle are game changers,” said VPE Community Coordinator Tyler Hettich. “She supports our school in countless ways and I know I can call on her at a moment’s notice.”

Yardeny is equally grateful for Hettich who is known for his incredible leadership, strategic planning and warm, welcoming energy in managing volunteers. Due to his efforts, VPE boasts the highest number of approved volunteers in APS!

“Tyler makes volunteering easy,” said Yardeny. “He ensures we have clarity about processes and a long-lasting sense of purpose.”

With such support, Yardeny and her team volunteer an average of 50 to 75 hours a week between their school sites.
However, she encourages aspiring volunteers to never underestimate the impact even a mere 30 minutes can make.
“Every drop in the bucket will eventually fill that bucket,” she said. “It doesn’t have to be big, but the reward will be great.”

April 7-13 is National Volunteer Week and we thank every APS volunteer for the sacrifices they make to help our students shape successful futures.

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