Category Archives: Saturday Volunteering

Recaps of our experiences at each volunteering event (and socials)

2W Recap: CAFB and UUMC

Welcome back to a new semester! A new semester, a new year, new chances and new changes. We’re excited to be back and to have all of you back safe from the holidays (and those terrible road conditions those two days).

01

We started the semester off on 1/25 at Capital Area Food Bank on S Congress. First, we’d like to thank our drivers–Meredith, Lauren, and Jason–for providing our volunteers a ride to the location on time. Second, we’d like to thank all of our new volunteers and first-time CAFB-goers for volunteering with us. We wouldn’t have been able to sort enough food and drinks for over 5000 meals if it wasn’t for all of you! 

On 2/01, we had our second event of the semester near-campus at the University United Methodist Church. Our volunteers did a variety of jobs ranging from making three sorts of sandwiches to stuffing brown bags to passing out drinks to being hospitable and sociable among the crowd we served. We were able to make over 200 bags, and even more sandwiches.

02

 

Continue reading

3W Recap: Hope Fest, UUMC, Micah 6 Volunteering

(Oof. A general warning to procrastinators:  it’s a slippery slope.)

Greetings, readers! The following is a long post filled with a plethora of photos from the past few weeks. Specifically, we’ll be talking about HopeFest (10/26), UUMC (11/02), and Micah 6 (11/09). The details may not be all there, but hopefully a picture really is worth a thousand words. Thanks to all of those who contributed to this post and helped make this happen. And thanks to all the volunteers who have been to these events and the past two General Meetings (which will not be recapped).

00

First off, HopeFest. H2O volunteered at HopeFest’s Day of Celebration, hosted locally by Reagan High School. This day of celebration comes during their

Continue reading

Volunteering at Casa Marianella

Last Saturday (10/19), H2O had the chance to volunteer at Casa Marianella, an emergency homeless shelter that provides housing and support for immigrants, asylum seekers, and asylees.

To find out more about Casa, please visit:  http://www.casamarianella.org/

After H2O was shown around the shelter and briefed about its history and mission, the staff at Casa asked us to help them repaint parts of their main house that either hadn’t been painted in awhile or had been in a position of frequent wear or damage. The choices of paint were interesting to say the least, but definitely gave the emergency shelter an interestingly bold and bright accent.

Happy to get out of the cold, we went inside to prepare the kitchen for new paint. With a warm, wet cloth, we wiped down surfaces including steps, banisters and doors. A few of our volunteers then scraped off thin layers of paint and wood for a smoother surfaces to paint on.

03

Julia and Tima working hard to scrape off old paint

While some volunteers got to stay in the shelter of the warm house, others of us Continue reading

Micah 6 Volunteering

This past Saturday (10/12), H2O volunteered at Micah 6. We introduced several new volunteers to the local food pantry right off of Guadalupe.

Image

New volunteers filling out their first-time forms

As soon as we signed-in, we went straight to work, setting up the bagging stations and shelving all sorts of goods from cans to meats to grains to fruits and vegetables. By the time we were done, nearly barren shelves were practically bursting with items!

03

Krysinda waits in front of the juice and cereal shelves, which she stacked full!

Continue reading

2W Recap (Social, General Meeting, & Double E)

These past two weeks have been new and exciting for H2O (so this is a long post). We had our first social in a very long time, held our first general meeting, and featured a double-event Saturday. Phew!

Last Saturday, several of our members came down to the Union Underground to socialize and play billiards (but mostly to socialize). We arrived unsure of our abilities, but once Jason and Rosary paired up together, they dominated. We met a new face and had a lot of fun enjoying each other’s company so much that we continued the conversation down to the Indian place on the Drag.

Image

Jamie, Lauren, Elizabeth, and Jason playing billiards

On Monday, service coordinator Katie Ray led the semester’s first general meeting in room BUR 130. The current local issue featured during the meeting was the Keep Austin Affordable campaign, which focuses on increasing awareness and garnering support for an affordable housing bond package on the November 2013 ballot. In particular, our meeting focused on Scott Clapper’s story in their video as a reminder of the diversity of circumstances that lead to people becoming homeless. Katie raised some interesting discussion questions, and we were glad to see many new and returning faces join in on the conversation.

Interested in learning more about our organization or other issues in the area? Join us for our next meeting on October 14 at 6:00 PM, same place!

This past Saturday, we had our double-event extravaganza! Our Google survey for the first time asked our volunteers to choose between two locations, Capital Area Food Bank and UUMC, and we had a terrific turn-out.

Image

Traditional group photo in front of UUMC — what a turn-out!

The group above is only part of our volunteers who came out Saturday morning, since a few who went to Capital Area Food Bank (CAFB) are not pictured. This was H2O’s first time being a part of UUMC’s Brown Lunch program (they’ve been doing it for four Saturdays already!), but everyone agreed that it was a great experience. We manned the coffee station, passed out lunches, sorted trash, and were hospitality staff. Although the tasks weren’t exhausting, the people who grabbed lunch were all very appreciative our presence and efforts.

After we helped UUMC clean up and collect inventory, the group decided to try some Mediterranean food on 24th.

Image

H2O gathers around a circle at a café after volunteering

Unfortunately, no documentation was had of the group who went to CAFB. Nonetheless, the volunteers were with co-chair Jason and no doubt had a great time and were very pleased with their output at the end of the morning.

To volunteer with us, join our mailing list or join our facebook group (see “Contact Us!”)

-T

Volunteering at Genesis Gardens

Last Saturday, H2O had the opportunity to volunteer at Genesis Gardens, a subset of Mobile Loaves & Fishes, a non-profit organization that provides home grown food to the homeless community of Austin. The  organization has a great vision to cultivate an empowered community of the neighborly and the homeless, and we were able to help.

A short drive away from the mini-farm that modeled the organization’s vision, our volunteers were able to take in the sight of a working development. We divided up into small teams to help with various tasks, including laying down hay, feeding chickens, digging rows, and building. One of our volunteers even had the opportunity to harvest some of the food grown at the mini-farm.

Different from our usual experiences in pantries or shelters, the work was not easy, but it helped us see how it works at the source of what we normally do.

Image

Guillermo, Katie, and Andrea helping to lay the muddy paths with hay

Continue reading

Volunteering at Micah 6

A week after our first event of the semester, we … wait for it … had our second event!

Image

As they do at least once every month, our wonderful volunteers walked over to the University Presbyterian Church next to campus to help out at the Micah 6 Food Pantry. The volunteers work together with the staff to run the non-profit pantry opened Thursdays and Saturdays, providing food for those who need it.

On Saturday morning, the pantry shoppers were called one by one. They walked into the pantry and saw shelves with food—boxes and cans, fresh and frozen—and the smiling faces of our volunteers who helped stock these shelves. As the shoppers made their way through the aisle, the volunteers greeted them happily and helped them with their items, even conversing with some shoppers as they went by! A few of our other volunteers helped bag their items, and one of our volunteers even got to open the back door for exiting shoppers, whose arms were filled with their bags of food.

I was stationed at the cans with Elizabeth and enjoyed assisting the Spanish-speaking shoppers. The people we served were all very kind and grateful, and we got many chances to interact with them.

For more information about Micah 6, visit their website: www.micah6austin.org/

To volunteer with us, join our mailing list or join our facebook group (see “Contact Us!”)! This weekend (9/21), we’re going to Genesis Gardens. We hope to see you soon!

Think you can write a better post? Me too! Come to our next event and talk to the publicity chair.

-T