Back in the day, on Wednesday morning at 9 o’clock, 8 – 10 volunteers would arrive at The Danish Home to shampoo, set, dry, and comb out the lady residents’ hair because everyone knows a woman always feels better when her hair looks good!
Esther Sorensen, lifelong volunteer and now resident at The Danish Home, fondly remembers preparing all the ladies for Her Majesty Queen Margrethe II’s visit to The Danish Home in May 1976. “The Queen shook each lady’s hand as she went table to table. We volunteers, were very proud that every one of the residents was perfectly coiffed for her visit.”
Among the women who volunteered in the beauty shop and now reside at The Danish Home are Lise Boserup and Shirley Andersen.
Shirley fondly remembers her decade-long tenure as a beautician after she retired from teaching 8th graders. “We did not charge to do their hair, but the residents wanted to give us something. To make them feel better, we would accept $1. Once we had enough ‘tip’ money, all the volunteers would go out for lunch. It was a wonderful time.”
The weekly practice created many bonds of friendship between the residents and the volunteers and among the volunteer beauticians. “We brought a lot of life and laughter into the community and made lifelong friendships,” according to Esther.
Lise Boserup recalls a great deal of volunteering at The Danish Home that included making sandwiches at the annual festival Summerfest and ten years as a beautician. “My husband was on the Danish Home Board of Directors, so we both volunteered quite a bit at The Home. I called Bingo and organized parties and events through the Women’s Auxiliary, of which I am a lifetime member and past 2nd Vice President.”
Esther Sorensen knows firsthand all about volunteering at The Danish Home. Not only did she work in the beauty shop for 25 years, but she was part of the original Women’s Auxiliary.
The Danish Home has been part of her life since she was a small child. Her parents and their friends were Danish. In fact, her husband, Jimmy, was one of the children she played with when the families got together.
“I first began volunteering to honor my mother. Then, I wanted to please my mother-in-law! Jimmy was on the Board of Directors as was Shirley’s husband,” Esther said. “Now that I am on the other side as a resident, I am so proud to be a Dane. Many non-Danes live at The Danish Home, and everyone is equally treated with respect and dignity. Donors and volunteers are still very generous in spirit, time and financial support. It is not surprising that our little community stays full and may soon expand.”