Larry Brunson has been a dedicated Coburn Place volunteer for five years. He does facility maintenance, he brings supplies for our Children’s Services program. He donates to fundraisers and helps run them. He is dependable and a bright spot in our residents’ and staff’s day.
But it’s the lives he’s changing outside of Coburn Place that makes his work extraordinary.
Larry is a mental health professional that specializes in youth with Severe Emotional Disturbance (SED) from ages 6-17 years old. Larry holds a community-based practice as a habilitation specialist in wraparound services as well as in the Division of Mental Health and Addiction (DMHA).
One of the truly transformative ways he helps kids is by involving them in community service. He helps them identify their strengths and mentors them with words but also with actions. He works right alongside the boys as they volunteer in organizations throughout the city, including of course, Coburn Place. They develop leadership and social skills. And he primes them for success.
On a recent day, he brought Mike with him. Mike was excited because he was about to turn 12 in a few weeks. That meant he could finally become an adoption counselor at the Humane Society. You could just see his eyes light up thinking about it! Larry told us how this time last year, Mike’s grades were awful. Now he is getting all B’s. In no small part due to Larry.
Larry shared, “Volunteering is a humbling experience. It exposes you to all kinds of people and makes you appreciate all you have. I love it! It’s also so empowering for the kids I work with.” Just like you are, friend.
Earlier this year we gave the 2015 “Volunteer of the Year” award to Larry. We’ve always thought he was an angel, but now it’s official. We nominated him for a Colts Anthem Angels award that honors “everyday heroes”, and not surprisingly, he won! He was honored in a ceremony on the field before the Colts/Chargers game on 9/25. (Read more about that on colts.com.) He was treated to 4 VIP Club seats and a thrilling game. And a bell must have been ringing somewhere, because this angel got his wings. We are so grateful to know such a generous soul; thank you, Larry, for all you do for us and for the community.