January Update

I don't have much news to report since last time. We're a bit busier this month because I work with a mentoring program and it's National Mentoring Month. Thus, we're holding an event to thank our mentors and doing a few other odds and ends to celebrate the month.

Last week I attended a meeting with other non-profits in the community hosted by the United Way. They are beginning a campaign to assist the non-profits in the area with recruiting volunteers. They are particularly focusing on targeting businesses to recruit their employees. This is fantastic because we're always looking for more volunteers and this is one of the aspects of my job. The United Way held an event in Jacksonville, Florida that is along similar lines and was hugely successful. Hopefully Charlottesville can do the same.

Now that I'm about halfway through with AmeriCorps sometimes I feel a little helpless. Firstly, there are some ideas or projects I would like to implement but I know I'm only here for another seven months so I'm not sure I could get them started in that time. On the one hand seven months seems like a long time but on the other hand, I’ve learned that projects always move slower than one expects. Secondly, a lot of the difficulty I feel my organization faces simply has to do with manpower (or womanpower since all are staff are women). The people here are amazing and I think if we could clone them, then we’d be in great shape. From the standpoint of capacity building, I'm not really sure how to tackle this problem. I'm overseeing a few unpaid interns this spring, which will help to an extent but it still only a temporary solution to a long-term problem. Of course, I know that this problem is pervasive especially in the non-profit world and thus, we all must simply find a way to function as best we can.