To alleviate the stress, Project H.O.P.E. conducts “self-care” activities for team members that have included dancing on the beach, collecting shells and engaging in “water pistol battles.” They’ve enjoyed “a day at the theatre,” free massages and a hurricane recipe challenge, Project H.O.P.E. reports say.
The South Florida Katrina team organized a picnic in April at Snyder Park in Fort Lauderdale that “was fun when staff and survivors were able to interact, play games and enjoy activities,” says one report. Three days later, Project H.O.P.E. managers treated 29 team members to lunch at Benihana “to alleviate stress after the team had worked so diligently on the Katrina Picnic.”
The people who put together events to help others often participate and interact, but they are also working. One of the ways they provide a service is to open themselves up to the pain of others…in this case, the victims of a hurricne that wiped out an entire city.
Taking the workers and planners out for dinner following the event was the right thing to do. They deserve much more than just a dinner, in my opinion.
Maybe we have different opinions about how donations should be spent. I do not want to donate to a charity that spends the money on a company picnic or dinner for the workers who planned and attended the same picnic.
I can see your point. It appears the FEMA-funded program is not successful because FEMA won’t give the program the names and contact info of victims. This lack of success is stressing out the program workers, so they have to have counsellors, etc. Wouldn’t it be easier and more cost-effective to just abandon the unsuccessful program?
But are you sure you’re not mad at them using a character called “Windy”???8)
Every charity utilizes volunteers. Every charity, in order to maintain a sufficient number of volunteers, has ways of recognizing and rewarding their efforts.
Many of these volunteers, through their close interaction with those they serve (hospice patients, storm victims, cancer patients, dying children) can be traumatized, as well. The associations look after and care for their volunteers for, without them, they could not provide a service.
Even hospitals do this for their volunteers. It is not only a widespread and accepted practice - but a necessary one.
If I could, I’ buy ALL of these people a dinner with my thanks for doing what so many cannot find the time or courage to do.
They held the picnic, then took the people out who attended the picnic unless I read it wrong.
I really appreciate charities also. However, it is widely accepted even within the ranks, that the program is embarassingly ineffective and a waste of money, targeting the wrong people etc. Some workers stated they felt guilty turning in hours because of what they were doing.
I was expecting to hear abut Bush’s Tax Payer Pid Campaign Junket he has been on for the past few weeks, or years, where he flys, on our tab, to various Fund Raising Events for Republican Candidates, yet occasionally signs some insignificant Bill, that could more easily signed in D.C., to justify the Taxpayer Picking up the Tab…
I know, you Republicans will say that Clinton did it to…but how does that make the “party of God” superior to the Democrats? The “Other Guy Did It” is not much of a defense.
Sounds like you worked for FEMA in a another life! I’m with Wendy on this one. As a donator of money and a volunteer of my time to many charities, I’d be more in favor of sending the victims to Benehana, rather than the charity employees. If we were able to obtain all the facts, we’d no doubt find the victims were served hot dogs and hamburgers, while the staff enjoyed Tempura at a fine dining establishment. What a concept?