St. Clair Shores residents Pamela and Bob Mason have fun while volunteering

By: Alyssa Ochss | St. Clair Shores Sentinel | Published June 18, 2024

 Pamela and Bob Mason participate in many volunteering endeavors including the Optimists Club and the Lac Ste. Claire Kiwanis.

Pamela and Bob Mason participate in many volunteering endeavors including the Optimists Club and the Lac Ste. Claire Kiwanis.

Photo by Erin Sanchez


ST. CLAIR SHORES — For these volunteers, giving back is fulfilling, fun and a great way to meet people.

Pamela and Bob Mason volunteer with the Lac Ste. Claire Kiwanis, the St. Clair Shores Memorial Day Parade Committee and the Optimist Club. They say they enjoy their time volunteering.

“I love helping out and being a part of the community, city,” Bob said.

“Getting to meet new people, that’s always fun,” Pamela said.

Starting around 2020 and 2021, they joined the Kiwanis. Last November, they joined the Optimists and volunteered for the parade before joining the committee around 2020. Bob is a volunteer for both the parade committee and the Kiwanis, and Pamela is the treasurer of the parade committee and the Kiwanis vice president.

Bob said he likes helping out and he agrees they’ve met so many new people since they started volunteering.

“So much has changed in our life as far as people we know, new friends,” Bob said.

Pamela said she likes to provide food for families during the holidays. She does this as part of the Kiwanis.

“I mean, it’s really hard. I couldn’t imagine having to ask somebody for food,” Pamela said. “I like to quietly provide, you know, to give that back, to give that to somebody if they’re in need of it because, I mean, that takes a lot to have to ask.”

Both Bob and Pamela didn’t come from a lot of money, Pamela said.

“We were a family accepting donations. I couldn’t even tell the first time I got a brand-new piece of clothing,” Pamela said.

She also said Bob’s family was sponsored for food.

“With both of our upbringings, we have the opportunity to be on the other side of it,” Pamela said. “On the giving side instead of the receiving side.”

Bob remembers a time they gave out a Thanksgiving dinner to a family and he said they were extremely grateful for the items.

“It touched me. I even told her, I said, ‘I want to sponsor them and do something for Christmas for them,’”  Bob said. “That was the highlight of all my volunteering so far. It was seeing that family so happy and so excited to get this meal for this big holiday that was just a couple days away.”

“The little boy came running up and grabbed the turkey and he was like ‘wow!’” Pamela added. “It was just really cool.”

People come up and thank them both for what they do, but Pamela said it’s not necessary.

“We get a lot of thank yous,” Bob said. “We really do so people do appreciate what you do.”

They both have fun while volunteering and Bob said a lot of their work happens behind the scenes.

“I don’t think people realize how fun it really is,” Pamela said. “I mean, sure, it’s fulfilling and you’re able to help everybody, but it’s just really fun. And you’re with people, like-minded people, and you’re all just having a really good time together.”

Though sometimes they have meetings in the same week, and they have normal daily lives to lead, both Bob and Pamela said it’s worth it to volunteer.

“I don’t want to stop. I won’t stop volunteering,” Bob said.

Pamela likes that most city events have free admission. She said in order to keep that going, the city needs volunteers.

“If everybody pitched in a little bit, we can make these events bigger and better and more often,” Pamela said.

They both recommend folks volunteer in their community because of the people they meet and the fulfillment they get from helping someone out. Bob said he thinks the people who don’t volunteer are missing out.

“Becoming a volunteer, joining something, it changes your life,” Bob said. “It changed ours.”

“And it feels good,” Pamela added. “And I recommend people get their children involved. You’re going to learn something from it. There’s always something to learn from it. So just get out there, get involved.”

To get involved with the City of St. Clair Shores, visit the city’s website at There you will find a list of commissions and committees. Pamela recommends finding your interests and going through the pages from there.

This article is part of an ongoing series recognizing individuals who volunteer or do a lot for the St. Clair Shores community. Do you know someone who should be featured? Email Alyssa Ochss at or call her at (586) 498-1103.