October Volunteer Day with Rebuilding Together Baltimore.
Our AmeriCorps Community Partner Coordinator met with Jaquel Mullen (Jay) to learn about her experience participating in RTB's first volunteer day in two years.
Jay is RTB's newest team member and serves as the AmeriCorps Project Coordinator for the next eleven months.
Mrs. P, a homeowner in the Greater Govans neighborhood in Northeast Baltimore, needed a new fence for added security and her kitchen needed some electrical repairs to make cooking and cleaning safer.
Volunteers from F&G Life worked with RTB staff to demolish the old fence and built a new, improved fence around her backyard, which backs up to a busy alleyway. While volunteers were busy outside, two electrical savvy volunteers worked in the kitchen. They repaired the fan over the stove and replaced the kitchen outlet with a ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) to ensure safety in the kitchen if the electrical outlet became exposed to water. A working exhaust fan over the stove keeps the kitchen ventilated and prevents moisture from accumulating. A volunteer also replaced Mrs. P's front screen door handle so the door would adequately close and lock.
How was your first volunteer day with RTB? How did you feel?
It felt amazing to help Mrs. P. She was so grateful and overjoyed with her new fence, and I genuinely believed we actually made a difference. It made me feel eager to experience more volunteer projects in the future.
Can you describe the atmosphere?
Meeting Mrs. P and working with the volunteers from F&G Life was a pleasure. The volunteers with skilled and eager to help. They were a hard-working team and were a blast to work alongside.
What are three things that stuck in your mind about the service experience?
One, the readiness and preparedness of the volunteer group. They were engaged and ready to work together and make an impact.
Two, the overall work that was done was impactful. In one day the volunteers, with the help of RTB staff demolished and built an entirely new fence. It was impressive.
Three, the feeling of completion and the feeling that something good had been done for another.
How does this volunteer experience compare to others you've had?
Compared to other volunteer experiences I've had in the past, it was invaluable to see an immediate change or improvement from tearing down the existing fence to constructing a brand new one. It was incredible to see the project through from beginning to end.