When Volunteering Isn’t Glamorous
Folding clothes. Sweeping floors. Raking leaves. Sounds far from glamorous, right?
When we think of “big” service projects, we tend to think of things that “make a difference”. Like building a well for a village in Central America, or painting a school for children in a country in Africa. Maybe we think of rocking babies, reading to kids, or playing board games with the elderly.
However, at Good Shepherd (and likely, many other volunteer sites), little projects make a big difference. Take our donation room, for example. Our groups of volunteers, typically students, volunteer here. The most basic tasks in this room include sorting new donations, checking for rips, tears, or stains. Volunteers fold, organize, and label clothing that come in. They find stray hangers and break down old cardboard boxes. They sweep and mop and dust.
Though this doesn’t sound as impactful as some of the service sites mentioned above, these service projects make a huge difference for clients and staff alike. For one, a group of volunteers, who are often eager and ready to work, can take the burden of keeping the donation room tidy away from our staff. They cut the time needed to be spent on the donation room, freeing up our staff schedules to do their work: connecting children with families and keeping families connected.
Our families use our donation room to “shop”, so it is vitally important for us to keep this room neat and presentable for them. When a child comes into foster care, we “shop” for new clothes for that child through our donation room. We are so honored to be able to present an organized and clean room for our foster parents to choose clothes for the child in their care. We are thankful to be able to have an organized system for our workers to find clothing quickly for clients that might not be able to “shop” in that space as well.
Thank you to all of our volunteers who spend their time sorting, folding, organizing, and keeping our donation room neat and clear for our clients. We are so appreciative of you!