Melissa's Oaxaca Service-Learning Blog

I was enrolled in a summer Service-Learning Program through ACCD. this blog follwed our adventures in San Antonio and in Oaxaca. It now holds some thoughts on life, and fun as well as comments. I will continue to post Oaxaca information as i get it. you will want to continue checking for updates since we are suppose to go back in March 07!

Memories of my past- SAMMinistries
Sunday, June 11, 2006
Preparing for lunch at St. Vincent De Paul was a fun task.
Mel, Liz and I got started right away with setting up the donuts, after our 1st assignment was completed, we spread out and jumped into different areas. There was much to do before lunch could be served.

We served 173 lunches. The preparations consisted of cutting potatoes, dividing up pie pieces, and slicing red tomatoes, among many other tasks. I assisted in washing dishes (yes I did do that), and making peanut butter sandwiches.

Liz and I than became the "hostess", we helped those with medical conditions, on walkers, as well as mothers with young children get their trays and drinks.

As the flow of hungry people started into the dining area, my heart sank.

Women, children, elderly and medically fragile. Some with somber looks, others with polite nods passed us by. Liz and I served as "hostess" assisting anyone that needed help with their trays.

When the men started coming in I had to walk away, almost running to the restroom.

Memories and tears started rushing in faster than the people. I was filled with emotion. I started remembering that my uncle would stay here. He would choose to live out in the streets instead of at home with my grandmother. Why would he do that? I asked myself. My grandmother would worry about him so much. We would look for him under trees, bridges, even visiting SAMMinistries, and find him. Was he more at home here?

As we helped and greet the flow of people coming in we would smile and get a smile back or even a hello, how are you. Many of the people coming in were polite, we heard please, and thank you many times. Than there were some that looked like they were just in their own world (like me sometimes), just going with the flow, maybe not sure where they were headed, or not sure what they wanted or needed in life.

It's comforting to know that SAMMinistries has always been around for those who need it and needed it in the past. That all those times when we worried if my uncle had something to eat, that he did have somewhere to go and find a warm meal.

SAMMinistries mission is to help the homeless and those at risk of becoming homeless attain self-sufficiency by offering, with dignity and compassion, shelter, housing and services.

Seeing today the wonderful work that St. Vincent de Paul, who manages the dining area, does I see the mission not only as a vision but a reality.

I walked out of there thankful that Silva Nhaera, who is the dining room manager, is there and that volunteers like us and others can come together and help, if only for a day.

If you want to make a change, not in someone's life but your own, go and volunteer, go and see the faces that need to be feed, clothed and welcomed. Than go home and see the face in the mirror that needs to be feed, with inspiration and faith, clothed with warmth from friends, and welcomed into society. We are not that different, in fact we are the same, human beings walking through life. Sometimes happy, sometimes with a blank stare, not knowing where we are going. Maybe we think we are rich because we have the roof over our head, warm water and food, and maybe they think we are poor, because our society lacks in compassion, empathy and respect for each other.
posted by Melissa Rodriguez @ 6/11/2006 06:45:00 PM  
Post a Comment
<< Home
About Me

Name: Melissa Rodriguez
Home: San Antonio, Texas, United States
About Me: New me, not the same one that started out in the begining of the summer. Oaxaca and what I saw here in SA changed me. I use to think I did a lot, volunteer for organizations, chair events. blablabla. But there is sooo much more to do! And i learned not to be afraid. Not that I was scared of things before. But not to be afraid to venture out and ask questions. Or to say NO! And to ask why something can't happen. To be in the middle of all that and not knowing what tomorrow held. Finding out who really loved you when you called home, who was waiting for your call.. maybe my last call, that woke me up to what i want for my life....New me ..braver, more aggressive, and more FOCUS than ever on a GOAL! UPDATE: one goal completed since last updated: i graduating w/ my AA in PR! 2nd goal going to OLLU for my BS. 3rd goal: WE ARE GOING BACK TO OAXACA!!!
See my complete profile
Previous Post
Powered by

Free Blogger Templates


© 2005 Melissa's Oaxaca Service-Learning Blog Template by Isnaini Dot Com