We spent another day working on Glenn’s home and getting more comfortable with drywalling. It was a better experience and we accomplished much more. Glenn was on site again and very gracious for all the work. We headed home and got ready to go to the Katrina exhibit in the French Quarter. It was very informative and offered an excellent history of New Orleans, hurricanes, and Katrina. It also had a nice Marti Gras exhibit. Free time in the FQ followed and the students had a great time exploring and buying an exchange gift for one another. We had dinner together and went back to Cafe du Monde for more beignets. When we returned to Duchesne House, we debriefed about the museum visit and enjoyed a reflection exercise. All went very well today.
Kailen’s Reflection: On the first day we did service with St. Bernard Project, we were given the task of putting up drywall. It was the first major construction project I had ever done and it proved to be a difficult project. When things didn’t go our way, tensions started to rise and productivity became an issue. As soon as we began to think the project turned into utter chaos, Glenn, the homeowner, paid us a visit. His honest and humble gratitude, even with the minimal work we had done, was quite endearing to me. The reason why I came to New Orleans in the first place was to get building experience and to work with the people affected. It was touching to hear his kind words and I was glad to be part of an experience that changed someone’s life.
Duncan’s Reflection: Building a home for Glenn and his two daughters was an eye-opening experience for me. I never thought that just showing up with a smile on your face was one the best mood changer for them. Even if we didn’t necessarily work, and some of us only watched our friends building was great, simply a person’s presence and a good attitude really changed the atmosphere for both Glen, myself, my friends, and other St. Bernard Project workers. I thought that it was great by the how much Glen really appreciated our work, even if we were just socializing with other.
Hailey’s Reflection: I really liked this trip. The people of New Orleans are grateful. An experienced that really stuck out was the first house we worked on (Glenn’s home). It was my first time working on a house and I really liked doing it. Every time that I got frustrated when dry walling, I thought of Glenn and how nice he was, which pushed me to keep going.