Angela Toomer is currently serving her 2nd year as Lasallian Volunteer at Tides Family Services in Pawtucket, RI. A native of Little Rock, Arkansas, Angela pursued a degree in English at Christian Brothers University.
|On a home visit with Woiwor, one of my clients.|
My day begins with rundown, which is when the members of my three-person team and my supervisor meet to update each other on the previous night and morning. Was the client in school? Were there any crises? How are X client and mom getting along? Rundown is a good time to celebrate our clients’ progress, or brainstorm ways to help our families. Following rundown, I may go to a school meeting or truancy court to advocate for a client. At Tides, no two days are identical, and we respond to clients’ needs as they come up. Caseworkers also take clients out in the community for recreational activities.
|My community cleaning up after Blizzard Nemo|
The meat of my day is visiting my clients’ homes. On any given day, I’ll visit clients and their families in eight to twelve homes in three different towns. Sometimes, a client or parent shares good news; other times, they need to vent about something that happened that day. Before I walk into a home, especially if the family and client are high-risk, I take a moment in my car to close my eyes and get some good vibes going. A trick I stole from a Christian Brother: using the Lasallian prayer, “Let us remember we are in the holy presence of God” before going inside so I can collect myself and walk in with a fresh outlook.
The Lasallian Volunteers program of the De La Salle Christian Brothers provides dedicated, well-trained Volunteers for one or more years of service to schools and agencies of the Brothers whose Mission is to serve the poor. Acting out of faith, rooted in the Gospel, and sharing community with the Brothers and other Lasallians, the Volunteers empower the poor by personalized service primarily through education. To learn more about their program, click here.