Monday, May 29, 2017

Chris Volunteered at 2-1-1, Reports on how hard and important this work is (but he isn't changing his major)

As you grow older, you will discover that you have two hands, one for helping yourself, the other for helping others.” – Audrey Hepburn. I think that the quote I have chosen has significance to what I’ve done for my service project. For my service project I volunteered at 2-1-1 Big Bend. This is an organization under the umbrella of The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline that’s located in Tallahassee. This organization provides free and private support with people dealing with suicidal or emotional distress over the phone 24 hours a day for 7 days a week. This organization has over 160 locations all over the United States and has helped thousands upon thousands of people that call everyday. What I really wanted to do was to be the person on one of those phones that answered people when they needed help or support or something, but those would require a minimum of 40 hours of training and they only offer those classes in January, March and November so it sucks that I missed the deadline for that. What I ended up doing though was studying or looking on and taking notes on what these people answering the phone calls did and what kind of emotional support they offered to whom was calling. It sure as hell isn’t an easy job, its probably one of the most grueling and emotionally tolling. I myself wasn’t helping someone but I was preparing myself to in the future. I did this for about five other people and everyone tried it relate and be compassionate to the people they were talking to. My understanding increased as I watched what these people actually do. One of the guys that I was observing was on the phone for about an hour and it was mostly just him listening to the person. Some of these people that call actually just want someone to talk to. They just can’t keep what they have bottled up inside anymore so they want someone else to tell them that its okay. I can relate to that. Lots of people can.  I wanted to do this service project organization because I myself have struggled with bad problems pertaining to these subjects before and I know it totally sucks to be in that type of mindset. I haven’t seen horrible times really, I come from a great family but I’ve struggled with lots of emotional problems over the years. Now that I’m doing pretty good its great to give back to people especially the ones that you can relate with and could have been in the same situations as you were. If I could just make one person’s day a little less shitty then that would be great. I don’t think it had much impact on my educational wisdom path really. 

Doing this was great but I don’t think I’ll switch my major of Animation/Film for something more related to this field which would probably be Human relations or psychology or something. I could though incorporate some of the emotions and feelings from my experience from this service project and use them in my medium to express myself with animations and such. To do a job like these people who work there is not a job for me. These people have to always be positive and upbeat when there on the phone. No matter if they’re having a shitty day themselves, they got to flip the switch when there on the phone.

 I could never do that, I myself being a mostly unenergetic sarcastic asshole would not be the right fit of this on full time duty. Doing things like the 2-1-1 Big Bend is a huge service to the community and the people of the community. It’s a great thing that this type of organization exists to help people cope with there lives and other things. Most people don’t have the money to go see a therapist or anything, so I free phone call is the perfect option. Also lots of times people are embarrassed to be face to face with another human being and would rather be anonymous and talk over the phone like this organization does. Overall I’m really glad that I volunteered at 2-1-1 Big Bend. I learned a lot from what I saw and hopefully will go back in the future to take one of those courses so next time I’d be the one on the phone helping whomever was calling me. So that was my service project.