Meet Emily Castello, our featured volunteer from the San Francisco Bay Area!
Get to know our volunteers!
Do you volunteer at a specific hospital? I volunteer at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital
How long have you been volunteering with Musicians On Call? 9 months
Are you a Volunteer Guide or Volunteer Musician? Guide
What is your occupation outside of MOC? Sales Executive @ Pandora
Do you have any hidden talents? Egyptian Ratscrew- many years of playing this card game on the pool deck has paid dividends
What is your story? What connects you with music and why do you volunteer with MOC? Music has been such an integral part of my life. Through the ups and downs, music has been my constant companion and provided a means for me to reflect and process the many moments of life. I first came across MOC during a company-led volunteer event at UCSF with MOC. I was initially drawn to this volunteer event, as I was looking for ways to give thanks to UCSF for healing two very important kiddos in my life. However what I wasn’t prepared for was the instant connection I would have to MOC and their mission. It was evident on that first day the positive impact and response from patients, their families and the hospital staff and I wanted to be part of it. Being able to take an active part in my community by way of music has been such a blessing!
What makes MOC different from your other volunteer experiences? The healing power of music is present in every smile, thank you or tear we receive from patients, their families and the UCSF staff. Every visit I am in awe of the passion and commitment our MOC volunteers and UCSF staff have towards supporting patients. I am also honored to be given the opportunity to connect directly with patients and their families. These patients and families are going through so much and being able to give them a moment of pause to enjoy music has been incredible.
Has your life changed because of your experience with MOC? Very much so!
What is your favorite #MOCmoment? So hard to pick one! A recent favorite “MOCmoment” was going into a room where we were warned the patient may seem disinterested in us, but secretly loved music. We decided to open with the Sponge Bob Square Pants song which immediately broke the ice and warranted a smile from the patient. By the end of the song, the entire room was singing along and laughing!