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Volunteers to swarm DNC in Charlotte for causes

Posted August 29, 2012

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— The politicians, delegates, celebrities and reporters heading to Charlotte next week for the Democratic National Convention will be joined by thousands of North Carolina volunteers.

Some of the 10,000 credentialed volunteers will be helping the convention run smoothly, but many will be there to advance various causes.

For some, like Jennifer Ferris of Chapel Hill, it's their first brush with big-time politics.

"It's really an adventure from start to finish," Ferris said Wednesday. "When I get in the car and head on out to Charlotte ... from then on out, I don't know what's going to happen."

When she heard last year that the Democratic convention would be in North Carolina, she said she briefly considered going. But she didn't think much more about it until she got an email from Planned Parenthood asking for convention volunteers.

"It was kind of a gut check for me," she said. "I was, like, 'Oh, I'd love to go, but I have nowhere to stay.' They're, like, 'We have some place to stay.' I'm, like, 'OK, I guess I'm doing this."

Ferris said she now can't wait to get to Charlotte, calling it a "big, fun political summer camp." She has an air mattress so she can sleep on the living room floor of a Planned Parenthood supporter in Charlotte, whom she's never met.

The organization will have about 330 volunteers at the convention.

Jennifer Ferris, Democratic convention volunteer Dem convention to be 'fun political summer camp' for volunteer

Ferris said she's never gone on the road to volunteer for anything before and has never been away from her two sons for as long as she plans to be in Charlotte. Her husband is taking time off from work to stay at home with the boys.

Still, she said, it is important for her to go.

"I feel like the political climate has gotten a little crazy, and we've kind of lost sight of, like, people like me," she said. "I'm a young mom, I'm a business owner, and I kind of feel like politicians are working in a vacuum."

Ferris said she's looking forward most to President Barack Obama's nomination acceptance speech next Thursday night at Bank of America Stadium. She's never seen him speak in person before.

"Going to Charlotte without the kids is a chance for me, even if I'm in the nosebleed (seats), I will have been a part of history," she said.

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  • Bob3425 Aug 30, 2012

    Hope he enjoy the rest of his time in public housing, he will be out soon. The people of Charlotte I feel for you but rather he goes there than here in Fayetteville.

  • driverkid3 Aug 30, 2012

    BaracOmaMustGo2012, I'm with you all the way on that one. I bet the WRAL coverage is going to be wall to wall with no other programming allowed. They LLLLLLLLLOOOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVVVVEEEEEE Obama that much.

  • mep Aug 29, 2012

    Didnt Obama bailout BOA?
    Volunteers get free or is it only discounted admission into the stadium.... in order to fill more seats... LOL. Dont want yet another embarrassing lack of attendance.

  • RomneyRyan2012 Aug 29, 2012

    Ferris said she's looking forward most to President Barack Obama's nomination acceptance speech next Thursday night at Bank of America Stadium. She's never seen him speak in person before.

    Thankfully me either and I don't intend to start now!