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Week 1

Week 1

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Published by Miles P. Kerbein

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Published by: Miles P. Kerbein on Feb 22, 2012
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Miles Kerbein Comm 495: Capstone Community Service Weekly Reflections Guide Week 1: For my capstone community service

I decided that I was going to volunteer at the Boys and Girls Club off of Marsh road here in Charlotte. Though I have done volunteer work before for instance with the Special Olympics, I had butterflies walking into this building even though these kids were significantly younger than me. As I walked in, I saw two boys playing right inside the door rolling a toy car back and forth to each other. The boy closest to the door immediately stood up and asked if I was a volunteer and I simply replied yes, then he grabbed me by the hand and told me to play with them. This was really eye opening because it was almost as if he could tell I was nervous walking in and he took it into his own hands to help me adapt to my new environment. My initial observations of the Boys and Girls Club was that it was crowded and seemed sort of hectic, but as the kids became adjusted to me being there and more and more staff arrived, it became significantly more calm. As I sat on the floor playing with these kids, I realized how much joy guests who volunteer can bring to these young kids days. Another amazing thing I witnessed when I was performing my service was a young girl who was doing her homework and when I walked over she was writing Chinese and practicing the language. This was amazing to see someone who was still in elementary school be able to speak and write a foreign language as complex as Chinese. Another event that took place was that once everyone was done with their homework everybody ran out and began playing again, however there was one boy who everyone left behind and when I walked over to talk to him and see what he was doing, he told me that he was stuck on his homework. So I sat down and began to look at what he was doing and tried to explain it

in ways that young boys would understand (comparing math problems to football or basketball). I sat with this young boy named Shane for about 45 minutes and went through his homework with him and he began to become more and more comfortable and as we switched subjects from math to science, I realized exactly how brilliant this young boy was. He was able to convert units of measurements faster than I could and overall was just incredibly bright. I am sure that through my classmate’s experiences you hear about how this community service is amazing to take part in and participate in, however I really feel as though that I cannot explain the feeling I had when I was helping these kids and having fun with them. From the moment I walked in the door I had a smile on my face until I walked out. It gave me the sense as though they were a small community in themselves, they all shared and respected each other. I cannot write on paper the feelings that I had when I was there, and I know that the people who choose to volunteer at the Boys and Girls Club will have the same feeling that I did, and if they do not fully embrace all that these kids can offer, then they are cheating themselves out of an experience that can really open a naïve college students mind. Without a doubt it was the highlight of my week, and I look forward to seeing Shane and “Man Man” again on Thursday and I hope that they look forward to seeing me as well.

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