giving time; living a passion
July 18, 2014

Volunteer work is something so rewarding, that sometimes words can’t even express its gratitude. I had many opportunities for community services to choose from. Being in my profession, I wanted something to do with pediatrics. Pediatrics is a path in nursing I have really considered due to my compassion towards children of all ages. With this in mind, I chose St. Matthews Church to spend some time educating children in many ways, and they educated me as well! I was able to spend a full day with them. This day included nap times, snack times, and play times! During each of these hours, I was able to educate these children with my current knowledge. For example, during snack time, we ate bananas! “Where do bananas come from,” some would ask. “The store, of course!” Cute answer of course. But as I explained to them that farmers grew these bananas just for them and it took water and sun to grow these bananas, I could see their eyes brighten and the excitement beaming from their faces. Being in the health field, I would ask if they knew which a healthier snack was and which we should choose for snack today, bananas or goldfish. Thankfully, bananas was a very popular answer. Once snack was over, we all had the energy, what felt like enough to run around the whole world three times fast, and we were able to enjoy the playground for play time. We played tag, hide’n’seek, and even rode tricycles (or so I tried!) I just couldn’t keep up with such little bodies! Once it was time to head inside, I took the opportunity to ask why we went outside to play. They looked at me slightly confused but surprisingly, the quite little girl in the back answered me. She said, “Because it’s good for us!” And she was exactly right. I thoroughly loved getting to teach these kids to stay healthy and active! This was my favorite community service I participated in. With that, I also joined in the concession stand for the carnival. Sounds funny maybe. What you don’t know is that this concession stand is run by the Pampa High School Band Alumni. I was able to give back to the band who encouraged me though high school and pushed me to where I am today.  I was able to see the effort put in by the members of the band staff and join them side by side. And for my last few hours, I accompanied Karlie Novian, the other WTAMU nursing student from Pampa, and two nurses from the Pampa hospital on a mini adventure delivering meals to those less fortunate. This was heartbreaking. As we drove through parts of Pampa I didn’t even know existed, I was devastated by the conditions. These homes where trashed, run down, and so small! Just recently, Pampa suffered from a wind storm so severe that trees were uproot, roofs were blown off, properties destroyed, and power outages encompassing the whole town. These people where already suffering without food! Being able to provide them with a meal and offer them some reassurance and company was very gratifying. I was immediately thankful for what I had and thankful I could be a part of these people’s lives, if even for a meal.

Damage from the wind storm in Pampa, Tx.
Damage from the wind storm in Pampa, Tx.

Entry way of St. Matthews church.
Entry way of St. Matthews church.