Managing and teaching in a shelter child center

Christams in August.

As I have mentioned before, I get completely overwhelmed when people show kindness. I’m not sure why. Maybe because of things that happened in my past. But anyway I digress. What I want to talk about is the overwhelming kindness of the people that provided our Christmas in August. Partially I’m surprised because we had just had our Back to school fest, and over 100 companies and community groups donated to that. So the children were already overwhelmed with new school supplies, clothing and coats.

But Christmas in August was different. It focused more on the personal needs needs not only of the children, but their families. They also donated the time and materials to fix up the classrooms, Toddler and infant area, parent nook, and staff room. At least that’s what I was told.

So we were served breakfast in the multipurpose/classroom early, so that they could set up the “Boutique” of gifts that all residents received. They includes, complete bedding sets for each person in the room (with all kinds of kids patterns and adults patterns) home items, night wear, including bathrobes and slippers, towels, hygiene items,Under garments, one complete winter outfit, jackets, socks, one professional outfit for job interviews or church, Books, toys, boardgames, umbrellas and I’m not sure what else. A lot.

Each person brought their family’s items to their rooms and we went out for the day. The choices were a day spa, a giants game, a movie, or tickets for an art exhibit at the museum of modern art. (I had the spa=) ). While we were out, they did a thorough deep cleaning of each room, putting on the new bedding and putting the boxes of household stuff where they could be seen. Stuffed animals and dolls and art supplies were left on beds, shoes lined up along the walls, etc.

The classrooms were reorganized with matching natural wood furniture (child sized), new manipulatives/puzzles and games were put on the shelves. New blocks joined the old ones, and there are now way more people and animals to add to their creations. We also have a smartboard in our pre-k class!!!!!!

I didn’t know that my family was going to be included. I also didn’t know that the reason people had been asking me what my dream office would look like was not just because they were curious about the remodeling I had started. I went to my office to pick up some paperwork that I can do while I’m still on leave. it had been transformed beyond the office of my dreams! The furniture is new. The cabinets are wheelchair level, so I don’t have to stretch and worry about knocking all my files on my head. (Yes, I have been known to do that!). The stairs both into the office and into my connecting restroom have been replaced by a ramp. there is a small basketball hoop over the wastepaper basket, and its painted my favorite blue and green combination. I even have a window!!! I didn’t know that, because I used to have a gigantic locked filing cabinet right in front of it. They have lovely lace curtains on them. White, but with a hint of really pale blue. Plus a working fan. Yes, My jaw about hit the floor. I sat there in tears for several minutes before going was truly the office of my dreams, including the terrarium ( currently empty. )

So I got the paperwork and headed to my room. And had another jaw dropping moment. I got the complete bedding set too!!! And another set of lovely curtains on newly cleaned and streak free windows. they made the most important accessibility fixes and some that are way more than I would have thought of. They separated an area for me,away from the kids. They opened up the door that led to the next room, so there is now a true children’s room, decorated to their taste. They fixed the closet door. They put tablecloths on the nightstands so they match the rest of the room. they cleaned everything. They even gave baggie the stuffed pain panther a knit hat, scarf and tail warmer. (because that’s what every stylish panther wears) There are bookshelves I can reach, too!

I’m sure I’m missing stuff in the description. It was on Friday, and I’m still overwhelmed by the kindness shown to our families, and to me! THANKS EVERYONE!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: