Posted by: bwoof | March 28, 2015

Communities of Belonging – volunteerism

I’ve been learning with my friends at CH about the huge difference betweeen ‘inclusion’ and ‘belonging’. Building Communities of Belonging is the theme in CH’s Jubilee Year and I see so many connections to other parts of my personal and professional life.

Yesterday, for example, I led 35+ volunteers as they prepped the food for a large community event which included 350 guests, many of whom were children. The day started at 7 a.m. and went until 5 p.m. and the folks assisting me imagewere absolutely pumped with joy — they had meaningful work in an accepting community. Stunning results!

Things I learned:

  • personal invitations (rather than broad announcements) make a difference. Surprisingly, many people do want to volunteer, but they are shy and won’t step forward unless I make direct contact
  • clear instructions that everyone can see and track make people feel like they know what to do and when to do it
  • plan, plan, plan, execute, reflect, then repeat this cycle for success

Grateful for:

  • Jennelle, Kristen, Lynnea et al who spent months planning the entire event (I only had to plan and deliver on the food end of things)
  • I belong (to a variety of groups, thankfully)

Curious about:

  • how will my bracket look by the end of tomorrow when the Final Four NCCA Basketball tourney increases in excitement. My dog nodded favourably when I asked him whom to select. He chose Michigan State vs Kentucky, and I have to say that he’s looking pretty smart right now
  • the trailer for the CH Jubilee is out and I’m wondering what the full-length version will showcase. This documentary is so important to me personally.
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