Tuesday, March 2, 2010

"Community Service" Serves More Than Just The Community

I think every one of us can readily agree that the volunteer work we did today not only benefited the community in a positive way but without a doubt, it benefited every single one of us personally.. helping us realize the power and significance of voluntarily contributing in the simplest form. The straightforward task of shoveling snow off of a playground so that children can play safely. Spreading out sand in a dog-run so that the dog-owners and man's best friend can play catch and romp around in a safe and clean environment. These both were simple tasks we performed for Partnership In The Parks with Terese Flores (City of New York Department of Parks and Recreation Manager) that not only helped create safe, fun and clean surroundings for the community.. but also cut out many hours that Terese and other workers would have otherwise spent doing these jobs. Terese Flores has faced budget cuts and has lost a few workers, so we were all aware that our work was very valuable. Here's some photos from The East River Esplanade .. Enjoy!

Terese Flores tells us about their work with Partnership In The Parks.

Removing snow from the playground.

Leveling sand in the dog-run.

Friendly dogs, Jean and Max, showing us appreciation for leveling their play area :)

Group photo.

After a fun time volunteering at the park, we made our trek to the Moravian Open Door home.. a not-for-profit organization where a safe, clean and substance-free environment is provided for the homeless. We volunteered here by performing an array of tasks including teaching basic computer skills to the residents, assembling a bed, sitting in at the front desk, washing dishes and preparing a handful of foods. Not only did the people working there accept us with open arms, but the residents made us feel very comfortable. Different from the work we did at the park, at the Moravian Open Door home we were able to see the effects of our volunteer work firsthand. The charisma beaming from some of the residents here warmed our hearts, and the overall gratitude of the work we were doing warmed our hearts even more. I'm sure some people in the world wouldn't be able to wrap their heads around the fact that there are people out there that have gone through life without knowing how to save files to a flash drive or change the desktop picture on their computer. Here, we had the opportunity to change a person's life by simply teaching them such skills. It was touching. Here's some photos from our day at the Moravian Open Door home.. I only have photos from the kitchen, because it was impossible to photograph assembling a bed while assembling it ;)

Banana Pudding!

Took a brief break to capture the fruit me and John were chopping for a delicious fruit salad for the residents.

Mack drying some dishes.

That's all I've got, folks!
Tomorrow we're heading to Housing Works, a thrift-store that is largest community-based AIDS service organization in the United States, as well as the nation’s largest minority-controlled AIDS service organization. We're going to help clean out the store, organize and merchandise it. Sweet deal.

Until next time,

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