Thursday, July 10, 2008
Come to your senses: volunteer
Anyone who has met me for more than five minutes since Katrina probably has heard some version of my “you should come volunteer with BonaResponds” spiel. There are all kinds of reasons why everyone should volunteer. Want a list? Ok, top ten reasons:
1. You help others.
2. You would want someone to help you if you needed it.
3. Without your help, some will not recover. Many others will suffer permanent losses without your help.
4. You experience a great sense of accomplishment.
5. You learn new skills.
6. You meet great people
7. You learn more about yourself.
8. Everyone can contribute something to make the world a better place.
9. Making others feel better makes you feel better.
10. It is FUN!!!
But those are only a few of the reasons. For instance today volunteers got to explore their senses.
Smell. Today’s dominant sense was smell. The smell was almost indescribable. But if you really want to try to smell what the basement smelled like, take some eggs, leave out for a week or two, mix with my available mold, sour milk, and sewage and you might get it.
Touch. Touch was also at the forefront. From the slimy dirty water volunteers were sloshing around in, to the falling slats of wood that continually fell from the ceiling, to the grit and grime that each volunteer felt on every inch of skin, volunteers’ sense of touch was worked overtime today.
Hearing. Audio is often ignored when considering volunteers, but today the volunteers who were listening heard much. It began early as a group of volunteers decided to talk loudly at a time when even the roosters were still sleeping. On the job sites, the ears were inundated with leaking water, pounding hammers, running generators, music (both from the radio and from other volunteers singing along), to the thanks of local residents.
Taste: First let me say that there have been almost zero complaints on food. The food has been great. Much of it is being made and served by members of the church that is allowing us to stay in their building. That said, the work today was so smelly that you could literally taste it.
Sight. There was so much to see today that I almost don’t know where to start. From the huge and growing debris piles, to the before and after pictures, to the smiling faces of the home owners who stopped by to see the progress. But if there is one thing, I will take the cooler of water that was waiting for us when we arrived today. The homeowners had left us a thank-you of cold water and more masks to wear as a token of their appreciation.
So there you have it. All the senses. And another reason to volunteer. You get to come to your senses :)