I AM DONE.
With volunteering at Sociedad, that is.
(And classes for this semester. But that’s another story.)
Wednesday was my last day at Sociedad Latina. My last day of service-learning. Of trying to force science down kids’ reluctant throats.
Because I’m a jerk, and I’m copping out. I don’t think I could last another semester at Sociedad. It’s just so chaotic there, and I’m so ineffectual, I always leave feeling hopeless.
And the service-learning! Oh, the service-learning. Working with a group trying to teach kids science. Ha! This is how I feel about working in groups: (courtesy of Endless Origami)
I somehow ended up, by the end, taking charge. I bothered my members to come up with labs. I e-mailed our supervisors. I was hoping that we could all share responsibility– but, nope. I had to bother the hell out of one guy to come up with one lab, just one week– and he barely did that– and twice I waited until midnight for a girl to send me her lab. Both times, I ended up having to write one myself. “I’m busy,” says one. “I’m stressed,” says another. WELL, SO AM I! SUCK IT UP!
Ok, I’m too mean. All of my group members are actually very nice people. We all came in with high hopes for our service. But we became so demoralized that mustering up motivation was extremely difficult.
That’s just my little tirade. Ignore me. I hate people. I think Sociedad Latina was one of my primary causes of stress this semester.
So now? I’m moving. I talked to the head of the CEP program, who is allowing me to switch service partners. I wanted one with flexible hours, so I opted for the Yawkey Boys and Girls Club located in Roxbury. I already met up with the head volunteer coordinator for my orientation.
One of the volunteer coordinators took me on a tour, and I have to say, this place is cool. It’s no less chaotic than Sociedad– it might be even more so, since it channels hundreds of kids each day. But they’ve got more structure. Solid programs. A gym, a fully furnished game room, a technology center with photoshop and video editing, a swim team… All sorts of cool stuff! And, lastly…
So I’ll be volunteering with the art program at Yawkey next semester. It’ll be chaotic, yeah. The kids will get rowdy, yeah. But at least I’ll be working with art, something I really love. Once again, I have high hopes. Though I probably shouldn’t, given my last experience…
And once again, I’m too harsh. Parting from Sociedad was still a bit sad. There were exactly three kids who became attached to me, two because of our mutual love for art and anime.
And this other kid, who happens to be completely and utterly fascinated with science. Not only did he understand all the crazy concepts we threw at him, he also asked great questions, and would rope me into lengthy discussions about the body, vaccines, pollution, war…
I mean, he once went on for about 10 minutes just like this:
So saying bye to these kids was pretty heartbreaking. I’m almost tempted to visit just to see them again. And the last kid– I had to tell him–
But these are small successes in a sea of failure. The rest of the kids didn’t really care about our labs. The 8th graders I worked with didn’t notice my presence. I’m throwing in the towel and moving on. Call me a terrible, cowardly, gutless deserter– it’s true. But Sociedad was making me miserable. I was unable to handle it.
So I’m done with Sociedad. I’m almost done with my first semester of college. Hopefully, the second time’s a charm.