A volunteering story by: Jicole Martinez

I Volunteered for our Local Church to Work the Crab Feed they were holding after a silent auction to benefit Kids getting involved in sports. My Tasks were from start to finish. I was to help set up tables, chairs, table clothes, decorations and silverware. We Learned how to fold Napkins fancily and how to place silverware in it’s proper order. We stocked hot crab ,butter, lemon and crackers into buckets and began bringing them out to our guest who were finishing up a silent auction. We lined up with the other kids that were assigned to the same tables as us. We began passing out the buckets, plastic bibs for the mess, and bringing out the food. Our guests were excited as we sat them at the tables and brought out the buckets of steaming hot crab with the condiments most people loved to slather onto their crab and corn. We waited on the attendees watching their trash buckets carefully. We would make sure to bring fresh buckets and bring dirty silverware and used buckets to the washing tub where we washed all those dishes. Many People splashed crab juice and butter on their close despite having those bibs and napkins. We made sure that the butter was melted and the crab stayed warm. We also served soft drinks and water with Lemon to our guests. This was the first time I had done any serving before so it was fun for me to learn on the fly.

The Inspiration

God inspired me I had been attending St.John’s and wanted to help out where I was needed. I heard of this opportunity to help out at the crab feed coming up and so My sister and I head out to help serve the people crab while they contribute to the silent auction. These people were taking a Saturday to help contribute to helping programs getting children involved in sports and after school activities. God inspired me to help others because there is so much going on in our daily lives we tend to forget about those less privileged or less involved people. I learned that everyone can help even if it is serving food to the people contributing to the finances that will help fuel Kids getting involved with the community and playing sports. I was also inspired by some of the many scriptures that we read and studied to help others even in the worst of times God will see what you are doing and no good deed goes unnoticed no matter how alone we feel. I had grown up thinking the only way to help people was donate money, give money or groceries to homeless people. I never realized that there were so many places that needed Volunteers to help make their mission possible. I was very lucky to grow up highly involved in sports and after school activities. I got to learn teamwork, dedication, loss and triumph. I got to feel part of a group with one common goal to beat the other team by out playing them. I learned Obedience, Focus and Respect in Tae Kwon Do, and Martial arts. I learned Grace, Control and discipline in Hula. I learned Balance,Pain, and Old customs in Dancing Hawaiian Hula and Tahitian. I learned to Persevere though Blood, Sweat and Tears playing Rugby. I can’t imagine a life without all of those activities that help shape me today. I learned to be competitive to really want something and to work hard for it. I wonder what will happen to all the kids now days not involved in extra curricular activities and sports. Even at that time it was not uncommon to see Toddlers playing on Computers, Smart Phones, and Tablets. Instead of out playing soccer with the neighborhood kids. Now Days many kids sit around and watch tv and are not active. I wanted to help those making it possible to open this world to children not lucky enough to be exposed to sports and extracurricular activities.

The Aha! moment…

I learned How important it is for children to have outlets to learn and exercise their bodies and minds. I believe children need an outlet to get energy out and play with other kids their age. I also think having goals and achievements is important for growing kids. They learn teamwork, how to share, how to problem solve, how to delegate tasks and follow through with them. Kids also learn about winning and losing and the highs and lows that come with it. I feel that if a child is never challenged, never motivated I feel they will be less productive to society as adults. People who face challenges, and persevere through them I believe will be stronger adults who can face the many issues and hurdles that face adults in society now days. I think that children that never experience these obstacles will be easier to defeat and crumble as adults when faced with stressful situations. Now with Child Obesity at a all time high I think exercise is important in growing children. Keeping them active and explaining the benefits to eating and living healthy. Many children are allowed to eat what they want and play video games all day or are glued to a computer or tv screen. Teaching children sports will likely motivate more children to go out and play baseball or soccer after homework instead of attaching to Technologies like Computers and TV’s.

To summarize it in three words…

  • mind-altering, Enlightenment, Gratitude

Why should you do this

Many times we are unaware of others and how they play their part in our complicated society. This Volunteer opportunity opened my eyes to how some people can contribute to our community no matter how big or small.

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