Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A Life Changing Experience

This year I have decided to once again volunteer and would like to share my experience from last year's life changing and inspiring day...

I decided to volunteer for Working Wardrobes "A Day Of Self Esteem For Woman." I've always wanted to volunteer but just could never step outside of my comfort zone. I finally made the commitment for today, which was a full day of makeup, hair, business attire, jewelry, shoes & purses for women in shelters. They would then get to have lunch and be in a fashion show at the end of the day. The event was held at the local community college. Prior to the day’s event the women had received job training and interview coaching during a six week program. The day also held a job fair, which after the makeover, they went to and applied their new found interview skills.

It was such a moving experience. I initially wanted to sign up for the personal shopper position (you help the ladies put their outfits together). Then I decided to let them put me wherever they needed me. They decided to have me be a photographer's assistant. I was at first a little disappointed, but decided to just go with it. Well I can honestly say that I was able to see life changing transformations. When the women arrived we were told to take before "the makeover" pictures, which was hard because the women didn't want their picture taken. After the makeover, the women's attitude was SO COMPLETELY DIFFERENT! They were happy, confident, excited and lined up asking us to take their picture. I was able to see these women who had come to the event with low self esteem, broken, sad , embarrassed and scared, be transformed not only in looks but most important confidence and self esteem. I realized that the position I was assigned allowed me to see the happiness and change in each and every one of these 125 women in just a short amount of time.

You always hear that when you volunteer, you receive more than you give. I can honestly say that this is true! I would like to encourage each of you to step outside of your comfort zone and find a place to volunteer. You will have a life changing experience!

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