Every story has a story. Behind the incredible stories that our older adults tell, there is a greater story of people young and old coming together and transforming each others’ lives. Here’s a piece of that great big Best Day Story, featuring childhood besties and loyal Best Day volunteers Alyssa and Madi! Alyssa and Madi are the dynamic duo behind the watercolor ecards that we are sending every month to donors all through 2017!


Teaming Up

When she was just 15, Madi Garvin began volunteering with Best Day at the Philadelphia Senior Center, where she transcribed stories for the older adults who had difficulty writing. “Recording the stories of people like Joe and Loretta were by far the most meaningful experiences,” Madi recalls. She found them so meaningful, in fact, that she asked Alyssa Abel, her best friend since Kindergarten, to volunteer with her! Alyssa agreed, and the energetic pair quickly became well-loved members of the Best Day family.


Moving Forward

Nearly six years after starting their journey with Best Day, Madi and Alyssa are now the creators of our watercolor ecards! Alyssa, who is currently studying to be an art teacher at Kutztown University, provides the stunning watercolors; Madi, a History and Experimental Humanities major at Bard College, selects inspiring quotes from Best Day stories to be featured on each of the monthly cards. Thanks to their combined passions and talent, the watercolors will be a beautiful way to spread the Best Day spirit!


Looking Back

“I think Best Day has taught me to really take a moment and listen to the stories [my grandfather] has to tell,” Alyssa says of the program’s impact on her life. “When I would volunteer, I could tell how everyone in the room really enjoyed being there…Sharing memories with friends and family is so important.” Madi agreed, adding, “Alyssa is the kind of person who is a lifelong friend, and I think we will be telling each other stories into old age.”


We think so, too…and we’ll be here to read them! Thank you, Madi and Alyssa, for your dedication, passion, and loyalty to our team!

(And a big thank you to fellow volunteer Kaitlin Kortonick for writing this beautiful volunteer spotlight!)