Nicole Pietersz: The heart of a volunteer is not measured in size, but by the depth of the commitment to make a difference in the life of others.


‘What do you do after your retirement? Volunteer work!’ This was exactly the thought of Nicole Pietersz, who retired after 32 years at IBM. Her sister Anouk Westmaas has been working as treasurer of the board of Ronald McDonald House Charities Curaçao for quite some time now. For this reason, it was an effortless decision to choose to volunteer for our foundation.

You may be able to find your purpose through volunteering and becoming part of something greater than yourself. For instance, if you’re retired, helping others can give your life new meaning and keep you mentally stimulated.

“Volunteering gives me a healthy boost to life satisfaction. You are doing good for others and the community. This provides a natural sense of accomplishment. As a committed and dedicated volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House Charities Curaçao, you become the touch of comfort for the family members of a sick child. By just being a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on or a domestic help, the satisfaction of this job is immense. All I can say is that I am grateful for being part of the Ronald McDonald team, that teaches me to be thankful and to look at my life and find ways to spread joy to others.”

Sometimes a volunteer also needs to be working during Christmas and New Years. Although the holidays can be a joyous time, it also can be stressful for many of the families. For Nicole volunteering on December 26, 2022 and January 2, 2023, gave this season a very special touch. “Especially during these days, there were many children staying at the hospital. I have enjoyed the opportunity to give back, so it feels a little more like home for the families that are going through a difficult time. It also helps keep things in perspective, as they are going through so much but are so grateful and appreciative for all our input. This is how we make the difference in the life of others.”

Register NOW for the Strides for Smiles Family Fun Walk on June 2!