Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Just Another Community Day at LPCS


Day 1

October 6 was the first round of games for Kick It Home, Chicago. The teams to beat were Northside Housing, The Institute of Women Today, and Deborah’s Place.

My name is Adrienne, and it was my first event playing for LPCS. Let’s just say, I needed to have some Long Jane’s on because it was a very crisp, cold day. Other than that, I was ready for action with my fellow teammates to play kickball and to have a bit of fun and share in the feelings of community.

After everyone warmed with light snacks, beverages, and a few layers of clothing, Northside Housing and Deborah’s Place were ready for action. Due to a few missing members on both sides, the community thing to do was to grab a few volunteers from other teams —and what sportsmanship! Balls were being kicked all around the park. Many players were sliding or smacking into one another to catch the kicballs. Our favor teammate, “Tony”, used his whole body to make the best plays he could, sliding into first, second, and third base. Way to go Tony!

Day 2

Team Spirit!
We were playing The Institute of Women Today, who had some very passionate kids on the field that wanted to take down the “Old People” on the field. As I remember one kid stated, “You are going down”. Ah, the laughs. Seeing that I’ve never played this sort of game before, my team and staff gave me a few pointers when it was my turn up to the plate. “Aim for third base, and kick with all your might!” Being left-footed and all, I wasn’t sure if that would help or hurt my case. But I gave it my best kick and off I went around the field for my first point of the game. Just for the record, I had a few strike outs, fouls, and balls along the way before reaching utopia of a run home, but that’s just the small details.

It was an exciting day and only one team could win. Sadly, we lost on the first game. Deborah’s Place took the honors with the score at 11 to 8. They passed their win on to Northside Housing for a shot at the title. Northside Housing was happy to take on the challenge for the community.

It was so much fun, excitement and best of all—full of community for Lincoln Park Community Shelter, Northside Housing, the Institute of Women Today, and Deborah’s Place. 

Thanks to everyone for making my first big LPCS event memorable!

By Adrienne, LPCS Guest

LPCS Team, Day 1

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Little Things

During this intense political climate, people seem to be full of worry. Worry about what will happen to their social security; worry about being able to pay off student loans; worry about who their neighbors will be in the next few years. With all of the worrying (and often complaining…) I cannot help but look around and feel grateful. That is one thing that working at LPCS has taught me: gratitude.

In this same spirit, I have decided to make a brief list of the things that I have only just recently learned to be grateful for since I first volunteered at LPCS.

1.      My microwave oven. Many of the people who stay at LPCS move on to be very successful, however there is a point in time when they are transitioning from living at LPCS to living on their own when money is still tight. Something that is a luxury in a new apartment is a microwave oven. I have never lived without the ability to make bagel bites, and I hope that I never have to.
2.      Space. Something that staff at LPCS is always trying to accommodate is more space. Storage space for leftover food, closet space for donated appliances, floor space for extra shoes, and, of course, living space for people to stay with us. It is hard to believe that there was a point in my life when I complained because my closet was too small for all of my clothing…I will never make this complaint again.
3.      Facebook Access. At LPCS, we are fortunate enough to have several computers for people to use in their job searches. We encourage Guests to spend their computer time working on resumes, searching for open job positions, or improving computer skills. What we don’t provide access to is social media sites such as Facebook. Not that I would ever spend my time at the office trolling facebook, but I have certainly learned to appreciate the freedom to do so when I go home.
4.      An Incoming Paycheck. I suppose this is an obvious one, but it is worth mentioning because some people go their entire lives without experiencing a steady paycheck, and others go their entire lives never having to worry about incoming money. Since I was 15 years old and I could get a work permit, I have held jobs. The jobs I have held range from bartending to dog watching, marketing to teaching back to dog walking, and most recently, to this very job I enjoy today. Even at times when money is tight, if I could just make it to the end of the week, I know that I will be able to buy myself more time (figuratively speaking). For this, I appreciate all of the people who have given me jobs throughout my life.
5.      My inconsistent sleep schedule. I currently work every Monday – Friday, 9-5. Some days I get to sleep in a little longer, others I have to be at the office into the late evening “burning the midnight oil” as Erin would say. While most days do require an alarm clock, I have practically worn out the Snooze button. An occasional roommate might awaken me during my sleep, but at the end of the day, I get to choose when my day will end. I can go to bed at 8PM when I feel tired enough, or I can stay up until 3AM to catch up on the latest season of Downton Abbey. I appreciate making that decision for myself, even when I have to deal with the consequences the next day.  

These are just a few of the many things that come to mind when I try to appreciate life, rather than worry or complain. Please share some of the things that you are grateful for.  

By: Meghan Freebeck
Community Relations Manager