Saturday, May 19, 2012

Week 1 at Harbor Family Services

This week started out with mostly training, last Thursday that was actually why I was scheduled to work.  This training included job shadowing, where my job was to fallow different staff members for a period of time and learn what my job consisted of.  There was alot to take in, but it was exciting to learn that being interested in video games and different cards games actually gave me a leg up.  This was because there are some kids who currently need pretty much constant supervision, and if you can genuinely be interested in what they are doing while your doing your job, it really seems to give them a little courage to keep trying even if they aren't doing very good.  The hardest part I found was when i was outside playing Frisbee with one kid in particular, it was hard to not just bring them back inside to the video games and card games, something they all seem to have a knack for.  I think this quote that I found in a book about wilderness therapy is a good way of describing how detrimental that could be:
"lets face it.  For most of us our first reaction when we see a drowning person is to swim out and try to save her.  It's going to take a certain restraint to row out to within shouting distance and give what equats to swimming lessons."
These kids come from backgrounds that almost seem to scare them away from anywhere they could fail, and to feel defeated from just a couple bad throws with a frisbee.  But from last thursday to yesterday I saw some spectacular improvements, with kids going from staying at it from only 10 minutes, to up to an hour while they still weren't a champion thrower, but they were finally able to make a straight line throw, what may seem like a small thing, but you could see the improvement in other parts for them, their room cleaner, more manners at the table, there almost seems to be a little confidence boost when they get those "swimming lessons".   And also something unexpected that came out of this new found confidence, they wanted to try something harder.  A small hunger was starting to grow for challenge, something hopefully that will continue to build. 

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