Sandy Munson has been volunteering as an Ambassador for Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota (LSS of MN) for six years, but her connection to the organization as a volunteer extends back to 1970. In her role as Ambassador, Sandy learned about organizational impact and found innovative ways to connect her congregation, Lord of Life Lutheran Church in Maple Grove, to LSS’ work in community.
Now, Sandy is the 2016 recipient of the Heritage Quilt Award. This award, a handmade quilt purchased by members of the Executive Leadership team, recognizes the outstanding efforts of LSS of MN volunteers who share their time and unique talents to deepen mission impact and build stronger community.
Since retiring from a beloved career in teaching, Sandy has found a new love in working with LSS Housing Services. In partnership with her congregation, she started the annual Children’s Clothing Store to help families find access to winter coats, clothing, school uniforms and resources to assist them in working. Under Sandy’s leadership, the impact of the Children’s Clothing Store has grown tremendously. Last year, 150 families and 500 children were able to bring home new clothes and other necessities.
“I am humbled to be selected for this award. It is wonderful to be recognized, but I know there are so many people who have participated in these projects,” Sandy said. “Our church, Lord of Life Lutheran in Maple Grove, is very active throughout the community, doing good works and reaching out to others. I gladly share this honor with the many church members who have participated in our volunteer projects on behalf of Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota.”
Sandy continued her efforts to build safer, more stable neighborhoods by helping to secure a $15,000 grant from her congregation. The award made it possible to build a wrought iron fence across from LSS’ Center for Changing Lives in Minneapolis. The fence has much more than aesthetic value, as it creates a safe, welcoming play area for children of families staying at the Center.
“Sandy works with unbelievable dedication and compassion to make certain that families have what they need to stay safe and healthy,” said Thomas Mueller, community engagement specialist for LSS of MN. “She is a wonderful volunteer who constantly keeps the needs and interests of people we serve in mind. It is a privilege to recognize her many contributions with this award.”
Sandy received special recognition and her award during a ceremony at Lord of Life Lutheran Church in Maple Grove on September 11, 2016.