Sunday, May 25, 2008

What is it like?

I have had several people ask me what a day of volunteering is like, so I will give you a brief look at what a day in Neosho is like and why you should consider coming out.

The building we stay in appears to be a former armory. It is very large, the Americorps volunteers stay downstairs, while HODR volunteers stay upstairs. The town had under 11,000 and probably most reminds me of what I think Harrisonburg VA was like pre-sprawl. There are several train tracks that go through the town. It is hillier than I expected. There is a very nice park for running :)

We leave at 8:00 (or as close to 8:00 as possible) each AM. We work (with short water breaks and a slightly longer lunch break) until 5pm. Work varies. Some days you may be putting on roofs, others fixing fences for farmers, others you may be tearing down houses, and on others you may be cutting and hauling downed trees (this is my favorite!)

You work with others and even if you have no expereince nor skills, you will learn quickly and be fine. You will also make a huge impact.

Staying at HODR food is free (although I generally go ahead and buy my own anyways as I have been known to be a bit pickier than most ;) ). You stay in a large room with a great group of other volunteers that often even help do your laundry!

What you don't often hear mentioned however is how grateful the local residents are for the help. On this trip alone two different people have stopped me on the street (or in a grocery store) to say thank you for being here. One of them also said I looked very metropolitan which I have no idea what that means but highly doubt I do.

If you do have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me or better HODR who will have better idea of availability, times etc.

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