Each month, the Mission Economic Development Agency honors one of its dedicated volunteers—the people who are an integral part of MEDA’s ability to provide free services to low- and moderate-income Bay Area residents. Thanks to all of the selfless MEDA volunteers who choose Plaza Adelante as their second home.
Name: Martin Esteban Farfan
Program: Community Real Estate
Why did you decide to volunteer with MEDA?
I decided to volunteer with Mission Economic Development Agency after hearing from friends and neighbors about all the necessary work the organization has done for community members in conducting workshops with focuses on workforce development, financial literacy and planning, small-business development, community real estate and IT training programs. The fact that the organization is offering such important services to local underserved communities, many which encompass San Francisco residents of color, is something that is important to me.
What projects have you worked on as a volunteer?
While volunteering at MEDA, I have assisted the Community Real Estate team by contributing to and reviewing informational memos on the Mission Action Plan 2020, sending out housing and services-related notices to community members, and accompanying staff on site visits to community member residences.
What do you like best about volunteering at MEDA?
I appreciate the familial feel among the MEDA’s staff members, as the office environment is very collaborative and supportive in nature. In being present in such a space, you get the feeling that each individual involved with the organization deeply cares about its mission and the communities that they are servicing.
What have you learned from your volunteer experience?
This experience has taught me significant amounts about how to incorporate community voices and input for services that are geared to assist them. I have also learned from staff about self-care approaches that allow for them to stay feeling fueled while doing such emotional work for a living.
Tell us something we may not know about you. Any interesting facts you’d like to share about your life?
I still avidly enjoy collecting CD’s, DVD’s, vinyl record, and VHS tapes, and have a huge collection that grows monthly. Also, although my hair is fairly short now, I used to only cut it once a year.
Looking to join a great cause, too? Find out how to volunteer at MEDA. We hope you can join us!