Nyoka Boley is a Holmes County native who was born into a large family who lived in a rural setting between Millersburg and Killbuck. She remembers growing up near the former fruit market on U.S. Route 62. Today she resides in Killbuck.
Nyoka started volunteering at Save & Serve in 2007 after the store moved from the former location on South Mad Anthony Street to its current location at 1108 S. Washington Street in Millersburg. “My sister, Effie Sheldon, started volunteering not too long after I started,” Nyoka said. “A friend, LaWanda Miller, who volunteers talked to me and invited me to try it out. Of course, I knew about Save & Serve because I liked to shop here before I started volunteering.”
Nyoka believes volunteering at Save & Serve is time well spent and because the schedule is flexible she can serve when time allows. “I volunteer nearly every day the store is open, about five days a week,” she said. “I like doing different things and have worked at lots of different areas over the years, like fabric and crafts, Christmas, clothing, housewares and behind the check-out counter.”
“My family encourages me to volunteer, too,” Nyoka said. “They like that I stay active.”
Nyoka’s own hobbies make her better able to do certain jobs at Save & Serve. “I enjoy doing handcrafts and sewing as a hobby at home, so I like working with that department at Save & Serve,” Nyoka said. “I like seeing all the different things that are donated.”
She also enjoys the snacks. “I like the food at Save & Serve. We have food of the month like pies, fruit plates, soup, bread, cookies, or doughnuts provided by the shop,” Nyoka said. “The popcorn was my favorite.”
“Over the past 10 years, Nyoka has served nearly every day at Save & Serve,” Eric Raber said. Raber serves as general manager of Save & Serve. “What an amazing record of faithful service. Even after all these years, she still brings an interest, a curiosity, in what the donations will be like on any given day. Also, it’s easy to see that Nyoka enjoys working with the other volunteers.”
Nyoka said she likes getting out of the house, working with the public and the other volunteers, but she also likes to keep busy helping others. “I feel good about helping other people; helping people in need around the world and right here in Holmes County. It is very rewarding,” she said.
Working together, especially with Katie Keim and Fannie Hershberger, is important to Nyoka. She sums up her volunteer experience in three words: friends, serving others, and enjoyment.