A few months ago the L’Arche leadership team had the privilege of attending a workshop at IBM in Burnaby. Our facilitator, Effron Esseivia, suggested that we choose one of our programs to which we could apply the Outcomes Thinking principles. We decided to use our Neighbours Helping Neighbours program as the model and spent several hours discussing how we could be strategic in gathering and using important information about the program for various stakeholders. During the course of the afternoon Effron became intrigued with the program and volunteered to come in for a morning.
Last Friday morning we took him up on the offer. He left his IBM corporate office to join the crew in doing some gardening for seniors in the neighbourhood. Jackie, the crew’s leader, reports that Effron worked hard and had a great attitude. Here are Effron’s thoughts on his experience:
As part of the course I taught on behalf of IBM Canada on Outcome Thinking vs. Goal Thinking to the leadership team of L’Arche here in Burnaby I offered to volunteer for part of a day and go out with the NHN crew and see what the program is all about. Of course I was looking for more insight into the program. What I got is so much more.
The generosity of spirit of the NHN crew, the positive interactions with the customer we worked for, the gratefulness of the customer and most importantly the camaraderie went far beyond my expectations and went even beyond the NHN crew into the lunch room where I was made to feel so welcome too. I miss everyone already and would do it again at the drop of a hat.
Thank you for giving L’Arche a morning of your time and energy Effron. We miss you too. You’re welcome at L’Arche any time!
Neighbours Helping Neighbours (NHN) is one of L’Arche Greater Vancouver’s two day programs that provide meaningful activities and outreach opportunities for adults with developmental disabilities. The NHN crew offers gardening and maintenance chores for seniors and others in Burnaby, New Westminster, South and East Vancouver. In 2011-2012 they worked over 2300 hours serving 65 customers. They do this “as neighbours” without expectation of payment.