As I watch the cursor blink on the screen it occurs to me that I have the lesson in mind without a specific story. I have been in the nonprofit world for many years and have had the ability to help people throughout my career. I know I have a great example for my lesson, I only need to recall the one that works best. I share my blogging struggles because I want others to know that you don’t have to have it all figured out to step out of your comfort zone.
On with the story…While working as a Program Coordinator, it was my duty to assist our clients with financial and resource needs. I had several opportunities to impact and improve the lives of those who sought help even in the last hour, keeping utilities on with a phone call or finding a hotel room for a family who was being evicted. I had one family that were repeat customers, some days it felt like daily, but I took their calls, listened to their newest situation and attempted to find the resources they needed.
On one occasion the daughter called around the holiday season stating that her children would have nothing under the tree and wondered if I could help her get into a gift program. I followed protocol and inquired about who she had contact to assist herself and her family, with her giving all the right answers, so I proceeded with finding a program that could provide her young children gifts under the tree on that magical morning.
I was so excited when I found a program that was still accepting applications and provided all the information they required to get the process moving forward. The case manager and I were done with the initial information gathering when her voice suddenly changed to a tone of disappointment. The family had already signed up for their program and had picked up the gifts assigned to them.
I was so frustrated to have given my time to them under false pretenses and while I wanted to call her immediately and blast her with my findings, collecting my professionalism was of the utmost importance. Once I collected my thoughts and emotions, I contacted the family to let them know that they had not been honest with me therefore they would not be receiving additional assistance with this request.
My lesson was that we must be charitable to our fellow man, regardless of outcome. I continued to help this family for several years after this incident, but I was able to give without expecting and that made my job easier from that point forward.
Have an Enlightened Day,