It was a beautiful, sunny morning in Paris as I walked along the Seine. It was my birthday and I was completely excited to be spending it in the city of lights!
Across the river, the Eiffel Tower’s wrought iron latticework gracefully sparkled in the sun. Below me I could spy on picturesque houseboats moored along the banks of the river and wondered what it would be like to vacation on one of them.
Tourist cameras were already snapping wildly as trinket vendors (les bouquinistes) began to set up their tiny stalls along the bridges.
I was heading towards the American Cathedral in Paris – on Avenue George V, in the heart of this wealthy tourist mecca – to begin my shift at their Mission Lunch.
Every Friday, 64 homeless and/or poor guests come for a hot, 3-course meal and dessert served by volunteers in a restaurant atmosphere.
Volunteering while traveling allows you to peek behind the curtain of a community to get to know its inner heart. It provides a uniquely un-touristy look at the local culture through the eyes of residents who are passionate about supporting, protecting and enhancing their corner of the world and the humanness that exists within it. For a brief moment in time you participate in their story and become part of the strength, compassion and resilience which makes their community thrive. Read more
Quantum physics contains a theory of entanglement, where two particles originating from a single source – for example, two electrons created from the energy of a collision – are created with a special kind of never-ending connection (communication) between them. Whatever happens to one of the particles instantaneously affects and changes the other (and vice versa).
What is amazing about this connection beyond its timelessness (instantly and forever) is that it is nonlocal, meaning no matter how far apart the particles travel from each other, even if they travel across the universe from each other, the connection never fades. They always mirror each other. They are forever intertwined… separate particles connected as one across space and time.
DoSomething.org is the future of volunteer and activism experiences. The non-profit uses a digital platform to power offline action through hundreds of grass-roots volunteer, social change, awareness and civic action campaigns.
Targeted at ages 13 – 30, the campaigns can be completed by individuals or groups, without any need for transportation, funding by participants, or oversight. Young adults love to get involved and make a difference. They are passionate about causes they identify with. DoSomething.org taps into that potential and makes getting active super easy and super fun, empowering teens and young adults to drive social change.
My husband and I are visiting Orlando for vacation this week and wanted to include some sort of volunteering activity into our trip. There are tons of places to volunteer in Orlando. The trick was finding an organization that needed help during the few days we were here. Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida made signing up a snap and they utilize a great number of volunteers each day so there was room in their schedule for two more!
It’s 7:30 a.m. Wednesday and rush hour is in full force. We are smack in the middle of the chaos of bumper-to-bumper traffic as it winds its way along spaghetti strings of highways leading to the George Washington Bridge. We are in Fort Lee, NJ – a 3 square mile city that wraps around the New Jersey side of the bridge. The views of the NYC skyline are amazing, especially as the sun was rising.
Martha (not her real name) has been coming to the food pantry for the last year. She’d turned 75 and making ends meet on a fixed income has become especially hard since her husband passed away a few years ago. She receives social security and a small pension, but the basics of life in Morris County (mortgage, electric, taxes, food, etc.) are expensive, as is the fee for her monthly medication, so it is really difficult for her to make ends meet…
St. Lucy’s Shelter is located a few short blocks north of the entrance to the Holland Tunnel, in a traffic-congested, gritty area of Jersey City. The beautiful architecture of the former church turned shelter is dwarfed by textile mills, warehouses and big box stores which surround it. I’m here to help serve dinner to the current residents/clients….