Touching Little Lives – Volunteer Spotlight: Dave and Sherri Seligson
Visit the Mission’s homework room on Tuesdays after school, and you’ll find Dave and Sherri Seligson listening to a child read, tutoring, or helping with homework. Self-proclaimed “science geeks” who met as physics lab partners at Rollins, they homeschooled their children and now share their love of learning with young students at the Mission. Dave, an electrical engineer, first visited the Mission as a child with his mother, serving Thanksgiving dinner. Later, he joined a friend, preaching at the men’s home once a month, and led his children in ministering to the homeless. “This is a ministry right here in our backyard,” he said. “We like the Mission’s unique model where they reach the whole person.”
On a tour of the family home, they saw the Career Learning Center, where adults earn their high school diplomas, and Dave started tutoring adults in math until a full-time tutor was hired. Sherri, a marine biologist who has written textbooks, loves working with children. “How are you going to figure it out?” she’ll ask a child struggling with a math problem, then gently guides that child into discovering the solution. “I love when the light bulb comes on,” she says.
“There’s always something you can do to help at the Mission. It doesn’t take any specialized training or education. Just letting a child read to you is so worthwhile,” Sherri said. “In just two hours you’ve touched a lot of little lives.” The transformation of those little lives is evident in the homework room, especially when they start by praying, as first grader Miah did when she thanked the Lord for food to eat and a place to sleep. At the Mission, volunteers like the Seligsons make those moments possible.