Today, I learned it is okay to admit and ask for help. When I arrived at Refugee Empowerment Program (R.E.P.) I was immediately able to talk to another volunteer about his experiences volunteering with R.E.P. It was lovely to meet and connect with someone who is till new to volunteering at R.E.P. I asked him what the experience has taught him thus far. His reply, “A huge appreciation for teachers. They work hard and are devoted to their students.”
Moments later we were greeted by Jules, one of the staff at R.E.P. He gave us a big smile and guided us inside the facility. The room was quite big and had several long tables and chairs. It was set up very much like a classroom, just larger. Other than a few volunteers, the room was empty; the children were on their way. I had no idea what to expect from this experience. Quickly, kids started filing in the room. Before I knew it, the room was filled with children of all ages working hard on their homework.
I was joined at my table by a couple of girls in the 2nd and 3rd grade. They came over to me with huge smiles and asked if I could help them. We worked on several different subjects: English, Math, and even the Bible. It was fun to be able to teach them tricks I was taught when I was their age, to help them remember what they were learning. The kids were eager to learn and were such hard workers; they did not stop until they were done. We made time for fun and lots of laughter along the way. Soon, the girls were finished and asked to go read. Moments later, two young boys approached the table I was sitting at, and asked for help with their Math homework. Math was always my favorite. I did not realize how much I had forgotten since grade school; I did not understand some of their assignments. It was difficult to admit to the boys that I was unsure of how to help them.
This experience showed me that I am allowed to admit I need help. These children were very quick to ask for help and say when they did not understand something. I often get caught up in making it seem like I have got it under control and that I do not need help. I am thankful for the children at R.E.P. who taught me how to remain humble and ask for help when I need it. I thought I was there to teach them something; they taught something much bigger in return.
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