Tribune Print Share Text

Service at the heart

Riderwood employees volunteer to spread cheer and support

Created date

November 3rd, 2016
Above: Employees of Riderwood cooked dinner for families staying at The Children’s Inn at National Institutes of Health. Below: Riderwood Executive Director Gary Hibbs (center, left) commemorates the renovations at Calverton Fire/EMS Station 841.

Above: Employees of Riderwood cooked dinner for families staying at The Children’s Inn at National Institutes of Health. Below: Riderwood Executive Director Gary Hibbs (center, left) commemorates the renovations at Calverton Fire/EMS Station 841.

It takes a special kind of person to work at Riderwood, the Erickson Living community in Silver Spring, Md. Management is dedicated to hiring employees who go above and beyond to serve the people who live at the community. 

During both work hours and time off, Riderwood employees are always living the company’s mission to “share our gifts to create communities that celebrate life.”  

Not surprisingly, Riderwood staff members also volunteer their time and talents to serve the broader community. Over the summer, Riderwood employees participated in two inspiring volunteer projects. 

Volunteering to fill the void

In June, a group of 25 employees organized by Riderwood’s music therapist, Samantha Kramer, volunteered at The Children’s Inn at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which offers free lodging to children receiving treatment, along with their families, at the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda. 

The Children’s Inn doesn’t provide meals for the people staying there, so volunteers often step in to fill the void. 

The Riderwood volunteers whipped up a summery feast of barbecue pulled pork, chicken, and beef along with greens, pasta salads, and desserts. 

Kramer says the children and their families were so appreciative for the delicious meal. And doing the good deed “fed the souls” of the Riderwood volunteers.

“[The Children’s Inn] is a place where magic happens. The kids are allowed to be kids, socializing, playing, and learning in a safe environment,” Kramer says. “Seeing them all together, with the worries of the tough day behind, and in each other’s company is a beautiful sight.”

Partnership with neighbors

Also over the summer, Riderwood staff members showed their appreciation for the Calverton Fire/EMS Station 841 of the Prince George’s County Fire Department, which has partnered with the Riderwood security team to provide emergency services when needed at the community’s 120-acre campus. 

Organized by Eddie Bharucha, Riderwood’s customer service and communications manager, employees renovated the kitchen and lounge area at the fire station. 

With help from local businesses, including Business Flooring, Inc., Cypress Contracting, and Hacker Painting, the Riderwood team did demolition work; painted walls; hooked up appliances; and installed drop-ceiling tiles, lighting, and flooring. The estimated value of the work is about $20,000.

A celebratory “reveal” took place at the fire station on July 8. Project leaders and the Calverton Station crew were joined by Prince George’s County Fire Department Chief Marc S. Bashoor for a brief ceremony and refreshments. 

Riderwood Executive Director Gary Hibbs attended and expressed his appreciation for the dedicated firefighters and EMS personnel.

“The safety and well-being of our residents is at the top of our list in creating the foundation for a great community and a great life,” Hibbs said at the ceremony. “This partnership with our neighbors goes a long way in cementing this foundation firmly in place.”

Comments