Friday, July 22, 2016

Nicole Came Back Wiser and Hopeful

 Student Service Project Reports, AMH 2020 Summer 2016 

The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others. -Mahatma
The most rewarding thing in life is feeling good about yourself and the things you can do to help
others feel good too. I’ve been raised to stay humble and to care for and respect the needs of
others, but I never fully intended to become this person who has so much empathy. What I mean
by that is everyday I have this desire to do something for someone else. Whether it is as little as
surprising my best friend with coffee when she can’t wakeup, or offering a ride to a coworker
who recently is having a hard time. I feel so deeply for others when I see them in pain or
struggling and its especially bad when its out of my hands. It is definitely what made me want to
do something I’ve never done before where volunteering is concerned! I normally volunteer with
animals because so many are abused and given up on, but so are these women. I find that if you
can loose yourself in the service of others than your outlook on life becomes so much sweeter. If
you can do things for anyone other than yourself, you can make someone else’s life much
sweeter too!
For my service project I visited the Kearney Center, located about 3mi from my
apartment. I never thought much about the building that I passed by multiple times a week
whether it was on my way to work or on my way out with friends, I never really gave it a second
glance. Upon my arrival at the Kearney center I was let into an office to sign my name and the
time I arrived; 7/13/16, 5:00pm. This was the “Women’s Wings” shift, I was helped by staff
member Alex, who all of the ladies knew very well and called “Mrs. Alex”. This woman was
definitely an example of someone who looses themselves in the service of others as she has made
this place her career in life. There are approximately 40-45 women in the wing, with two
different sides divided by doors, both include cots and bunk beds. The showers and bathrooms
are also located behind the women’s wing.

 My job was simple but very rewarding, I worked 
behind the counter of the supply room. In this room I was behind a window and would hand the
women various things such as; towels, linens for their bed/cot, shampoo or and toiletries
available, and those who had slips were given permission to do laundry if it was their day to do
so. I also helped Mrs. Alex setup the cots in an orderly fashion, two side by side, then another set
of two about a ft. apart. This way they could maximize the rooms full capacity. The time seemed
to fly by because before I knew it 7oclock hit and it was time for me to sign out.
Furthermore, this service project impacted my educational wisdom path and made me
realize just how seriously I should be taking school. School is what is going to help me decide
where I want to go in life and its my job to make sure I get there. Upon completion of my service
at the Kearny center I made it a personal goal of mine to never be in a position where I need to
ask permission to have an extra bed linen or and extra ticket to do my laundry. Its okay to need
help, at some point I feel like everyone does, but I don’t want to be the person who’s asking for
help in life, I want to be the one who’s offering it. I felt so great leaving the shelter because I
know I had a small impact on the lives of these women. 

Whether it was a smile or something as
simple as portioning out shampoo for them, I know it made a positive difference in their day and
that makes me happy. I hope that by my volunteering at the shelter this encourages other students
like myself to reach out to your community shelters and offer your time and service. If that was
you or me in the position of these women wouldn’t you want to know that there are people in
this world who have compassion and generosity in their hearts? We need to be a community of
people who want to do something to better the life of someone besides ourselves. In a world with
so much evil even the tinniest things you can do for someone else can make a serious difference.
If we all just took an hour or two from focusing on ourselves and helped someone else the world
would have more empathetic and humble people.