Picking up from yesterday –
Thankfully, one woman brought a rice and meat dish. Thank goodness for her, or all we would’ve had to give would’ve been oranges and cookies. (It’s thanks to other volunteers that we even had that much.)
It was just an interesting day where no one really seemed to understand what organization we were volunteering with…
Also, someone needs to base a sketch character off “Coach Glen – the one and only immediately.
Coach Glen (T.O.A.O) was always pounding the table saying “peoples! peoples, peoples!” anytime he wanted to drive a point home. He also sort of liked to repeat himself when it came to talking about things his organization(? – if it exists, I’m still a little skeptical) had done. (And he started and ended most things saying “amen.”
He enjoyed mentioning how world famous skid row was. I get that it’s a place mentioned in a lot of things. But it was weird to me, sort of selling the idea of feeding homeless people (which we were already there to do anyway) by talking about how famous the area was…
He was obsessed with the idea that they needed a power-washer. I can’t tell you how much he impressed upon us that his group needed a power-washer for the park. He kept talking to always of us, it felt in sort of a pressuring way to somehow find more money to give, or find a power washer.
I understand that once you have volunteers, you want to rev them up and get them to do more things for your organization, but the constant, impassioned pleas for money and supplies was a bit overwhelming (not just to me, but to people I talked to that day as well).
So, we’re hearing about this power washer multiple times, but none of us could make it appear out of thin air – though it seemed in his eyes like he wished we could.
Also, we were all supposed to donate $5 – which I did… But I did find it odd that we all ponied up $5 to a man in the middle of a park who really just had a folding table. Nothing else distinguished him from anybody else. Volunteers brought the food. We met in the park.
He could’ve been a random guy who just had a table and put a listing on Volunteer Match. (Legitimately, I’d say there’s at least a 40% chance that’s true…) If this is some enterprising sneaky scheme to make money, it’s probably not the easiest or fastest way to do it. But humongous kudos for thinking outside the box.
(I guess it’s not incredibly odd to have to give money as part of a volunteer activity… I did have to pay to ride the Do Good Bus. However, it cost the organization money to do the ride. So, I understood why they needed it. And that’s the only other volunteer event I can think of where it was a requirement to give money… So, it did feel weird that we’re already there to volunteer our time (and many people already brought food). And we’re still required to give $5?)
He does seem to legitimately run a reading club. So, he’s probably legitimate to some degree. And maybe it’s silly and awful to be so cynical and such. But I wondered as we all just handed over cash to this strange man, “What is this money going to be used for?”
So, an odd day with an odd man who left all the volunteers looking a little perplexed.
However, we did end up somehow rationing the food out perfectly so that everyone who wanted some got some with nothing leftover. So, some good got done – no matter how puzzled we all were. Yay to that.