I can’t believe five weeks has already passed. We are all now half-way through our summer fellowship and I have no idea where the time has gone. It feels like I just arrived yesterday and yet when I pause to reflect on everything I’ve done and experienced so far I can’t help but be amazed. I have participated in mass produce distributions, I have volunteered building coffee tables, and I have inventoried and sorted over 800 backpacks. I have attended meetings, created supply budgets, and learned which fork to use at an etiquette lunch at the Columbus Foundation. I have done and experienced so many things so far, and yet the summer is only half over. In this mid-point reflection I am realizing that my summer is simultaneously already and only half over.
This week I find myself knee deep in my overall project for the summer as well as preparation for Homeport’s Backpack Drives in August. I have spent countless hours writing and revising, and then revising again, a large document outlining the Business Process Management (an newer model for Standard Operating Procedures) of the major Homeport Volunteer Initiatives. So far I have completed about thirty pages of process description, photos, and diagrams for our monthly summer produce distributions. I am also about 20 pages into the process description and spreadsheets for our backpack drives. Realizing that this is my half-way point reminds me of where I’m headed. Before this summer is over I will have created probably at least an 80 page document that can be referenced by any employee to understand major processes in the Volunteer Engagement department.
Writing about the Backpack drive has been a challenge. Each year Homeport provides over 1500 backpacks stuffed with school supplies for students in each of our communities. Unlike the produce fairs, backpack drives are held once a year and require a lot of preparation. As such I have not experienced any of the events surrounding the backpack distribution, nor has my boss, who started in the position in January. This has allowed me to get a lot more involved in the strategizing and planning for this particular volunteer initiative. I have inventoried backpacks, helped create supply budgets, helped plan our backpack stuffing events, and now find myself buried in boxes of school supplies and backpacks. There is not a hallway in the office that is not lined with backpacks or school supplies. This coming week we will hold our first backpack stuffing event and I will get to help plan and coordinate this effort. More importantly I’ll have another five pages to add to my business process management document. This summer is both already halfway over and only halfway over, so bring on the second half!