Local Volunteer Happy to Help Despite the Odds

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The holidays are one of the busiest times of year for the North Texas Food Bank.  Its a time when the organization needs volunteers the most.  One man sees volunteering there as his personal obligation year round, no matter what.

    For the last four and a half years, Mike Snider has run a tight ship at the North Texas Food Bank.

    Food Bank Volunteer Teaches Important Life Lesson

    [DFW] Food Bank Volunteer Teaches Important Life Lesson
    A North Texan recovering from a stroke teaches others important life lessons.

    "You can not sit down," said Snider.  "You have to work hard."

    When he started volunteering at the North Texas Food Bank it was only supposed to be for a month.

    "I was looking for somewhere to volunteer after Katrina and I looked up on the Internet and found this place," said Snider.  "And I been here ever since."

    From moving pallets of boxes to packing them up for hungry North Texans during the holiday season, there's nowhere else Snider would rather spend his retirement years.  Especially now.

    "There was a time when we didn't think he'd be able to do that again," said Snider's wife Pam.

    Just a year and a half ago, Snider had a stroke.

    "He got us and went to the bathroom," said Pam.  "Said his eyes were stinging and when he came back he couldn't talk right.  He had to sit down, he couldn't walk."

    "My eyelid was affected, my mouth, my hands, my leg," said Snider.  "You could draw a line down my body and I was paralyzed on the right side."

    "He could have given up and said he wasn't going to do anything, but sit at home and watch TV," said Pam.

    But he didn't.  Snider actually talked his doctor into using his volunteer work at the Food Bank as his physical therapy to rehab from the stroke.

    "I just think if I keep working at it I can help people and so I do it," said Snider.

    Snider said it was difficult at first.

    "I didn't have the balance, but now I can lift pretty much any box in the place," said Snider.

    For him, coming face to face with someone he's helped, makes it all worthwhile.

    "She said, 'What do you do?' and I described what I did and she said, 'You feed me,'" Snider said. 

    He keeps going, he said, because he knows his struggle will help others who are struggling too.

    "If you don't use it, you lose it," said Snider.

    "I'm very proud of him," said Pam.  "Very proud."

    The North Texas Food Bank said they always need more volunteers.  For more information go to their website www.ntfb.org.