20 Apr Volunteering is a Family Affair for the Herndon Family
We are celebrating National Volunteer Appreciation Week and saluting all our volunteers who make a difference every day for our families.
The Herndon family has made volunteering at Atlanta Ronald McDonald House Charities a family affair for the past seven years. Doug and Natalie Herndon have always been role models for their daughter, Audrey, 26, demonstrating the importance of giving back to their community, particularly through charities that serve children.
Shortly after Audrey left home in 2014 to attend college at the University of Alabama, Doug and Natalie began volunteering at Atlanta RHMC. It was a natural fit for the couple who find great joy in talking with people and hearing their stories.
They became guest services volunteers with Natalie manning the front desk and Doug often taking on the less desirable, but necessary jobs of restocking toilet paper or reorganizing the storage room at the Peachtree Dunwoody House Scottish Rite. He was also instrumental in forming a group at work to cook meals once a month at the Gatewood House near Egleston.
The empty nesters moved to Florida in 2018, not realizing their only daughter would make her way back to Atlanta shortly after graduation. Upon her return, Audrey almost immediately took over her mom’s weekly volunteer assignment at the front desk of the Gatewood House.
The family reunited when Doug and Natalie moved to Buckhead in 2021. Although their in-person volunteering was sidelined by the pandemic, the Herndons’ dedication to serving others was not. Throughout the pandemic, the family regularly donated to the Amazon Wish List and responded to pantry refill requests for items like paper towels and individual coffee creamers — items they know are always in high demand at the Houses. They also provided individually prepared boxed meals once a month during the pandemic.
All three Herndons were thrilled to return to their in-person volunteer posts in March 2022. Doug is back at the House near Scottish Rite sorting Pop Tabs and organizing storage closets. And on Wednesday afternoons, you can find Natalie at the front desk for her two-hour shift. She often crosses paths with Audrey who often takes the evening shift — following in her parent’s footsteps once again.