Stand UP DC #2: Final Reflections on our Time in DC

Hello from our last day in Washington DC! We really can’t believe that this program is over! It has been an incredible 10 days, during which we have learned so much about service, the issues of homelessness and hunger, and ourselves.

On Monday, we spent the day putting together a playground for a wonderful family with an organization called Yachad. Four of the homeowner’s grandchildren spent the day playing hand games and singing songs with us as we worked, which was amazing and made the day that much more meaningful.

On Tuesday, our last service experience of the program was back at DC Central Kitchen, where we did our first hours of service at the start of the trip. Coming back to this great organization after ten days of activities and service allowed us to see just how much we had all bonded and learned as a group.

Here is the last set of quotes from our participants:

Hudson Havenhill (Hawthorne Hill, Illinois): “I started this trip with more answers than questions, but now I have more questions than answers. The important part is now to try and apply what I’ve learned when I get back. Whether that means volunteering, giving water to people on the street, or just saying “Good Morning!” to as many people as I can, I want to make an impact.”

Alyssa Goldberg (Stamford, Connecticut): “Throughout this trip, I have learned a lot about both the people and communities around me. I’ve gained a new perspective on those struggling with difficulties such as homelessness, and feel as though our whole group is much more educated and open to reaching out to those experiencing homelessness. Along with the service and learning we’ve done on this trip, I’ve made such amazing friends in such a short period of time. I loved this trip and would definitely go on one like it again!”

Sara Fink (Lafayette Hill, Pennsylvania): “Early in the program, we got the opportunity to listen to two speakers at the National Coalition for the Homeless: Candy and Steve. They have both experienced homelessness at different points in their lives and opened up to us about so many of the struggles they have been through. They were so kind, had so much to teach us, and were very inspiring. The day I heard Candy and Steve speak was a life-changing day and I’ll never forget it.”

Maya Barbieri (Woodbridge, CT): “Throughout this trip, many of the stereotypes that I previously had were completely broken down. Whether it was through the speakers, food distribution, or the personal conversations with those experiencing homelessness, the previous conceptions that I had began to disappear. If there was one thing that I would take away from this program, it’s that we are all human and none of us should be deprived of basic human needs. No matter your family background, yearly income, or current situation, we are all entitled to kindness.”

Michala Katz (Hamden, Connecticut): “This 10 day experience was everything except what I expected it would be. I learned about hope and positivity, not just within the topic of homelessness, but within my life overall. I was soaked in the pouring rain, I ran up enormous escalators, cooked a huge vat of eggs, and so much more, all while smiling. Thank you to everyone who showed me the joy of DC, the metro, new restaurants, and pure happiness and accomplishment. I will be forever grateful to my parents and grandparents for pushing me to go on this trip of a lifetime.”

On that note, we just wanted to thank you for sending your kids to DC to spend the last ten days with us – it has been a pleasure getting to learn from them, and alongside them, throughout this program.

0 comments… add one

Leave a Comment