On and off the clock, TSA employees continue to serve those around them. TSA’s Diversity and Inclusion and Women Empowering Women (WEW) group at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport (DTW) hosts volunteer events and guest speakers, and they’re helping in the Motor City community.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Diversity and Inclusion group volunteered to distribute food to 550 people in need in Detroit. The event was such a success they decided to continue lending a helping hand to other organizations that need their help.
The city’s Alternative for Girls (AFG) program serves homeless and at-risk girls and young women (ages 15 to 21) with its mission to help them avoid violence, prevent exploitation and provide access to support resources.
DTW’s Diversity and Inclusion and WEW recognized AFG’s important work and decided to lend a hand. Because of COVID restrictions, TSA employees could not directly interact with the young women, but that did not stop them from cleaning up the yard and planting flowers around the shelter so there would be something beautiful to look at.
“We are all here because it’s important to give back to our community,” said DTW TSA Manager Lazandra White.
TSA’s line of work entails making the public feel safe and protected, so it is no surprise this extends to the local community.
“We want to create the environment we want to live in,” White added.
“What motivates me to volunteer is that I want to make a difference; I want to create change, and I want to make an impact in someone’s life,” explained DTW TSA Executive Assistant Tanisha Robinson.
Robinson’s colleague, Assistant Federal Security Director for Law Enforcement Dirshawn King noted an impact that the community has made on him. When asked what motivates him to volunteer, he replied, “giving back to the community and supporting the community that raised me. They did a good job, so I want to give back and stay positive.”
“Every day, we take it for granted how blessed we are,” said Detroit TSA Federal Security Director Steve Lorincz. “Providing support for somebody makes you feel good about all the things we can do to help people out.”
The TSA group of volunteers shared the common feeling of wanting to give back to their community because of all of the blessings in their lives.
Training Specialist Joanna Dakroub feels fulfillment and excitement when volunteering, noting, “When I leave, I have a feeling of helping the community and nothing beats that.”
The positive feeling of serving the community is something that TSA employees will carry with them into the workplace. The sense of pride and responsibility was prevalent among these volunteers.
“You can’t just talk it, you have to walk it,” said TSA Officer Duree Miner-Johnson. “Whether it’s getting your hands dirty, donating money or donating goods, I’m all for it. I love to do it and give back to my community.”
The group also included TSA Special Security Officers Leah Russell-Jones and Latoya Bell and TSA Officer Renee Salzeider. Their commitment to community, safety and service shines through all aspects of their lives.