Tuesday, October 20, 2009

PostHeaderIcon Jenn: Volunteering

I volunteer for two organizations, last night I had back to back meetings for both of them. The first was PTA at my children's middle school. I volunteer for PTA for two reasons. 1. It keeps me informed about what is going on at the school - middle schoolers are not always the most reliable source of information and 2. For the Kids. To make sure that money is being spent on them, that quality programs are being brought into the school for them, that teachers are responsible to them for quality education. It's not about me but about my kids and your kids and all the kids in the school. Not everyone sitting in that meeting is there for them Sometimes I wonder why some people even bother to volunteer at all. They don't show up or come late or spend way too much time on one objective. They volunteer to get their kids better teachers or teams or to gain recognition for themselves. Although the PTA meeting was relatively painless except for the fact that half of the people coming to the meeting came a half hour late because the President put the wrong time on her reminder e-mail she sent out it was still relatively painless.

I left that meeting and went to the other organization I volunteer for and that is Girl Scouts. I am the leader for both my daughters . I love girl scouts, I love the girls, my older ones I have had for 5 years. But I can not stand the leader meetings. There is so much disorganization. And although I appreciate everyone who volunteers to do everything, we cover the same things each and every month - spend so much time on the same things and the meeting just go on and on. Tonight I walked out after a bit of a shouting match over a leaders dinner that I most likely won't attend. I don't do Girl Scouts for leader recognition or dinners or meetings, I do it for the girls. Would my life be much less complicated without having to run to all these meetings? Absolutely, but I am there for the kids. I still remember my GS leader, Mrs. Brana - she had a great impact on me and I looked forward to scouts every week. I want to be that leader for my girls - something they look forward to every week - to give them the confidence to stand up for themselves and to make a difference for the world. I don't need to sit in a meeting to do that. I think I will skip the rest of the leader meetings... and just concentrate on the kids


Corrie Howe said...

May God bless you for your ability to put others before yourself. I do a lot of volunteering too, I can see the same things. I was at a meeting last night for a citizen's advisory board on special education, lots of productive meeting time was spent on talking about a particular child, school, teacher, etc. GRRRRR! It was the first time I showed up to this meeting, but I kept trying to pull it back on track...mostly because I HATE inefficiency. :-)

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