Friday, August 21, 2009

Life At The Youth Shelter...

Well, it has been an interesting week! Didn't get many hours in this week at the shelter, and to be honest, I felt like walking out on the first day.
I only worked for 4 hours on Monday and it felt like an eternity. What did they have for me to do?? Supervise lunch, make sure the kids did their chores...then nothing really. I just wandered around basically asking if I could help out. Sure, I could clean out a large room full of donated goods, which would only take about 3 weeks if I hurried. I was very dissappointed to say the least. I did not pay $14,000 for an education to be the lunch lady or the cleaner. Not to mention, morning is not my friend and to be there by 8 or 8:30 a.m. was a fate worse than death. I've been used to the afternoon shift for years. And to make matters worse, they only wanted me to come in that early to make breakfast!! No way...this is a 24 - 7 shelter and I decided to talk to her (the administrator) about doing afternoon shifts. After all, I'm free help and they can take advantage of that to a point, but I should be able to make my own hours. I decided to talk to the lady about it the next day.
When I got there Tuesday morning, one of the kids was standing outside, looking like 'ordered but not picked up', so to speak. She informed me that the shelter was completely on lock-down until 5p.m. and nobody could get in until then. It would have been nice to have been told this, but I wasn't. The poor girl was stuck standing outside for the rest of the day, and it was hot. We ended up driving her to a friends house. I realized that this was probably breaking some kind of rule, but too bad. I couldn't just leave her out there.
Now I was really annoyed.
I didn't go in on Wednesday, but gave them a call. She apologized for not informing me of the meeting. I told her that I would be busy until Friday, because frankly, I was pissed off. I said I would give her a schedule and would she mind if I worked the afternoon shift. She said, (thankfully) that would be fine. O.K. I was happy with that.
I decided I would work from 1 to 7p.m., Monday to Friday and a few times a week, go and help out in the various programs they have in the evening, such as Anger Management, AA and NA. That would fill in the rest of my hours. She is fine with that. Praise the Lord!!
Today I went in with some trepidation, as I did not want to be stuck in the kitchen all day again. I was thinking as I walked in, 'Be assertive, Tory. Insist on them teaching you the ropes!!' O.K. So, after I made the evening snacks, (a fruitbowl and dip), and being told I would be resposible for them every day, (crap!) I went to the front line and told one of the women, 'O.K., teach me about the intake process!' And she did!! I then read some of the residents files and spent some time talking to the kids themselves, one on one, in a casual kind of way. It was great! They were so willing to tell me about themselves, which I was surprised at. I thought they would be hesitant to speak to a newcomer. But, for each and every one I spoke to, my heart broke for them. Sad, sad, sad.
But all in all, it was a really good day. I'm so glad, as I really thought I would have to look for another placement. Something usefull, but today I believe was useful and I'm very happy.
I'm tired tonight, because I was getting used to my life of leisure at the 'love nest.' I don't work tomorrow, but on Sunday evening I'm going to help out at the NA (narcotics anonymous) meeting. I'm really looking forward to that. It is an open meeting and is mostly made of people from the community, not too many kids from the shelter go there. It will be a great learning experience.
Other than that, not much else is new. I'm still waiting to hear from the interview I did on Tuesday to see if they want me to do counseling for them. I hope they do.
That's it for now.
Take care.

6 comments:

forsythia said...

I bet those kids really loved having someone listen, really llisten, to them. Isn't that what we all want?

Tory said...

Thanks Forsythia. I hope it does help a little. I hope u had a good time while u were away.
Take Care
Tory

forsythia said...

Ya gotta come read "Bone of my Bones" and "Freaky Fractured Femurs" on my blog. Hope you're doing OK.

forsythia said...

Tory, Where are you? Snowed in? Feet frozen to the sidewalk? Are you OK?

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