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Reflections on Service

Posted on 11/09/2010 @ 11:51 AM

Read more about The Big EASY through the eyes of a teen participant, Danielle Liberman, New Jersey.

Coming into this experience, I assumed the community service project at the General Assembly would be something like handing out food, or building houses. My expectations could not have been more wrong.

After a bus tour around the entire city, our small delegation met at the Ninth Ward, an area with one of the least recovery after Katrina. With the majority of the area being empty lots, our job was to clean the area up, brush out leaves, weeds, and plants. These plants have been growing for five years.  Incredibly no one has touched it since Katrina hit.

While initially walking down the street to start our mission, all that was seen is the weeds, the houses were no longer noticeable. Five members of our PANIN delegation worked with me to clean the weeds from the street to a fence, twenty feet from the street. To my astonishment, after fourty-five minutes the weeds were cut down, and a fence had become visible. I started to look around and I noticed a similar pattern for success.

A house that had been abandoned since Katrina, was now visible, the door was now accessable, and volunteers started to trickle into the house for the first time since the storm.  To my surprise among the rubbish artifacts were found. A statue, and CD disk were found, showing signs of life from the previous owners.

This was the best part of the entire experience, after working for three hours we were able to notice how we can change the world. After three hours a house is uncovered, sidewalks are cleared, and the neighborhood has been cleaned. As teen leaders, we see the big picture, and realize what needs to be done to improve the situation in New Orleans.

Read more about The Big EASY through the eyes of a teen participant, Aaronn Spiewak, New Jersey.

AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I had so much fun helping out and meeting new people. I felt great after the community we helped acknowledged and thanked us. We helped out clearing out what seemed like a forest so we they could build houses on that land.

This is the Place to Keep Up With Panim el Panim!

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