A Staff Spotlight Feature

Llonae discovered Ariva while seeking relevant experience and community service opportunities through CUNY Service Corps, a nonprofit organization that places students in the CUNY system with other nonprofits. She was completing her Bachelor of Science in Accounting and valued the Service Corps’ intentional selection of purpose-driven organizations. Among her top choices was Ariva—and we are grateful the feeling was mutual. 

That was nearly eight years ago. Since then, Llonae has worked across numerous roles within our team as a free Tax Prep NYC Volunteer, Quality Reviewer, and now as Site Coordinator. For the most recent tax season, Llonae worked at our Bronx Library, Kingsbridge, and POTS locations offering free tax filing NYC. Her expertise in accounting contributes to the team immensely, but her passion for serving the community has made the most significant impact.

“People always tell me I could be making so much more money being a tax accountant and charging however much money I want, but the thing that brings me to Ariva is the community aspect. It’s about helping somebody, hearing their stories, and not looking for a dollar from it,” she humbly shares.

Like many on our team, Llonae understands that people experience many hardships in their life which impact their finances. The last thing they should worry about is their taxes. That’s why Llonae loves that Ariva offers free tax preparation NYC for people who can benefit from getting their taxes done and relieve some financial stress.

Llonae also works full-time for a bank as an accountant. She enjoys handling numbers, computing journal entries, and filing reconciliations. However, Llonae emphasizes that you don’t have to be an accountant to be a volunteer. Many of our team members come from all industries, from health care to food services.

Once you are trained through our IRS-certified onboarding process, you can file free taxes NYC like a pro. In addition, we have helpful tools, such as our tax software, that do most of the computing for you. Becoming a volunteer is less about knowing the hard skills of accounting and more about your willingness to learn, dedication to the cause, and care for others. 

Also, you’re not alone when you’re part of the Ariva team. Llonea expresses how hands-on Ariva supervisors are. We care about each of you, how the tax program is managed, and how the clients are treated, which makes for a positive environment. 

The benefits of working as a volunteer are endless. It’s a great way to learn a valuable financial skill: NYC tax prep. It’s also a diverse, vibrant, bustling space to meet new people, whether staff members, interns, volunteers, or clients. Llonae says she feels affirmed in her purpose and has become more confident in her accounting skills, communication style, and career choices. 

“I enjoy being around people that care about what they’re doing. At Ariva, I’m doing something I love, and I’m in an environment where I know people care about me, and I care about those people, too,” she says.

Seeking that feeling of purpose and community in your career or volunteer experience? Looking for genuine camaraderie in the workplace? Find opportunities to join our team here.