Ed Arnold-Hi, my name is Ed Arnold and I am the AmeriCorps Vista assigned to Catholic Charities as the Yavapai County project coordinator for its VITA free tax preparation program. Our IRS-trained volunteers work to ensure that every low/moderate income tax filer in Yavapai County not only has their tax return done correctly, but that it is e-filed in a timely manner and that they have received all tax credits for which they qualify.
Not really exciting stuff unless you like sitting around with a like-minded group of people discussing the finer points of tax law. Funny thing is our volunteers come back year after year and if you ask any one of them why, it’s almost certain the answer will be “the people we meet and serve and the personal satisfaction from helping folk though what can be for many a bewildering and intimidating task.” The dedication of our volunteers to our clients is simply tremendous.
Just a couple weeks ago, when one of our certified preparers wasn’t satisfied with what the tax software had come up with as a refund for a woman and her disabled son, he went home and did some research. The next day, he asked me to reopen her tax return and take another look. Together with the quality review volunteer of her return, we went over her return with a fine tooth comb and found that she was entitled to a much larger refund. Calling to inform her of the good news has been the high point of my year and a real blessing for her; all due to the dedication and care of our outstanding volunteers.