Wednesday, December 30, 2009

This I Believe

Following is an essay written by Junior Volunteer, Matt Levin, for his Honors English class.  Matt will be 16 this month.    He attends middle school in the Parkway district.  Matt started volunteering for the World Bird Sanctuary in 2008, and has become a valued member of our team.

Junior Volunteer, Matt Levin, holding Waylon, a Blue & Gold Macaw


"This I Believe"


          "I believe in the basic human need to belong.  This need to belong can  be as simple as needing friends so that you feel that you have a place in the world, or, for me, it could be as complex as continuing to volunteer at the World Bird Sanctuary.  For me, the need to belong is huge, since I don’t have much of a life outside of school, let alone a social life.
          "When I stopped to think about it, it seemed pretty obvious what I could do to fix that problem.  I could volunteer at the World Bird Sanctuary!  Not only has the World Bird Sanctuary given me a place in the world, but it also makes me feel like, to quote a Linkin Park song,” I’m somewhere I belong”.  Although I still don’t have much of a life outside of that, when I’m volunteering at the World Bird Sanctuary, I feel like I belong because all of the staff is really friendly and easy to get along with.  Also, it’s easy to see that, when I leave to go back home, that I’ve accomplished something, because I sign off for the things that I did on a chore sheet and then I can see just how helpful I was.
"Another reason why I feel like I belong at the World Bird Sanctuary is that whenever I get something done, whichever staff members are there always thank me and let me know that they recognize and appreciate the fact that I did something.  This is also a part of needing to belong--having work that you did, and could have worked hard on-- recognized in a way that you know it’s recognized.  Also, according to some of the staff members, when I started volunteering, there were only a few junior volunteers.  (A junior volunteer is someone who volunteers at the World Bird Sanctuary who is under the age of 17.  After 17, you’re just a volunteer.)  Now, however, there are a lot more than just me and around one other person.  I feel so strongly that I belong at the World Bird Sanctuary, that if I get the chance, I’m going to work there.

          "I believe in the basic need to belong and to have your work recognized in a way that you notice.  The World Bird Sanctuary helps me accomplish both of these things."


Submitted by Matt Levin, World Bird Sanctuary Junior Volunteer


1 comment:

punkeymonkey529 said...

Volunteering is a wonderful thing.I volunteer at the Ohio Bird Sanctuary,and I absolutely love it.
I love birds,there amazing creatures.When I'm there,weather I'm helping feeding the owls,the hawks,or in the songbird aviary.It all wonderful.