I'm Groovin...

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

I get by with a little help from my friends

Work has been getting steadily busier.
I was just meeting with the IT guy for our building because two of our dinasour computers are unable to load our new wireless chips so we can get them connected to the internet. I have a conference call with my boss in about an hour so I have to prepare some notes/questions for that.

Yesterday was pretty fast paced as well. We didn't see as many clients in our office like Monday but there was a lot of training and we had a Local Advisory Board meeting at 5:30.

Yesterday we learned about our commuity partners and how to work with difficult clients. Our community partners are social service organizations within the community that we work with to either get clients into the office or refer our clients to.

One of the cooler organizations that we work with is Vote for Homes. They are an advocacy organization that work on issues that affect the homeless population in Philadelphia. They have these meeting once a month that some pretty big hitters in the Philadelphia social service world show up to. There is one next week and I'm hoping to go just to make some connections and learn about the work they do.

In learning about our commuity partners, Alex also gave us some tips on organizations that do some pretty sketchy things or are just unethical in the way they work with community members. An example would be Aramark. Aramark is a huge company that provides food services for universities and sporting complexes. They also are known for not promoting minorities, have unreliable work schedules that make their employees unsure of what they will be making week to week and keep their employees time just below full-time to avoid giving them benefits. Pretty sketchy.

After that we learned about working with difficult and challenging clients and about clients that are banned from the office. Clients are banned from the office if they exhibit behavior that is aggresive or endangers volunteers and us. We have every client sign a rights and responsibilites form so they are aware of what is acceptable and what is not and there are usually significant warnings before a client is told that they may not come back.

Our Local Advisory Board (LAB) meeting was at 5:30. The LAB works as our board of directors. It's made up of people from the community who advise our organization. Currently we only have three members on our board and only one of them came, so we have some challenges in building up the board. However, Hillary Aisenstein the director of the Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development, is quite awesome. I loved meeting with her because she gave us some great ideas, knows a ton of people in the city and connects us with them and really knows her stuff.
We were talking about our challenges in getting Temple volunteers in the office and she keyed us in on the new Gen Ed requirements at Temple that integrate service-learning into all of their subject areas. It's a great way for us to sell our opportunity to professors and administrators. One of our other challenges with getting Temple volunteers is that Temple is a commuter school so it's difficult to entice students to stay in North Philadelphia a little bit longer to do anything. But I've been researching at Temple and they have some great living learning communities that I think we might be able to work with. All in all it was a good meeting.

Heading home I was just dead tired though. Ok so I get on the Broad Subway line which is 14th street and then transfer to the Market cause I live past 30th. Well I got on the Broad, transfered to Market and it wasn't until we got to 2nd street that I realized I was going in the completely wrong direction. Needless to say I knocked out when I got home.

Well, toodles for now.

Song: I get by with a little help from my friends by the Beatles

Quote: Never apologize for showing feeling. When you do so, you apologize for the truth. Benjamin Disraeli

No comments: