Throughout the 2014-2015 school year, I have led the Head Start outreach initiative at Friends. Every few weeks, my co-leader and I took a group of Friends students to the Head Start location at the Educational Alliance. We split up into several classrooms full of young children around the age of five and entertained the young children. We did activities like puzzles, computer games, board games, trains, and more with the kids, while creating relationships with them.
Head Start was a great experience as it really became an activity that I enjoyed to lead for the community. Seeing these happy and adorable kids and having them recognize me every time I visited, gave me an incredible feeling. I feel that working with these children not only left a positive impact on the children and their families, but also on me. I am super glad I participated with this organization and would love to continue working with them in the future.
On service day 2014, my advisory went to a NYC food bank. We took the subway out to Harlem and worked in the pantry section, organizing boxed and canned goods. Each member of our advisory had a specific station in the little food supply area and for about two hours, we each stayed in our designated spot, helping the customers choose which goods they wanted and giving them the appropriate amount for their family.
This experience was very touching as we saw a variety of different people come in to shop, including single elders and families with young children. It was crazy to see how we were only allowed to give a certain amount of food to each customer according to the food bank’s policies. It was especially tough denying some of the shoppers when they were begging us to sneak them an extra can of beans or an extra carton of milk.
However, overall, I really enjoyed working at the food bank because we got to interact with the people, which made me feel like I was actually contributing to the community. We furthermore got to experience what it was like for some of those low-income families who had to carefully and strategically pick out their week’s supply of food from very limited choices.