Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Worcester Days

12 schools down- 19 to go! I was in Worcester today distributing our Halloween event flyers to the elementary schools. It went pretty well, except I got a late start and didn't get to as many schools as I wanted. It really takes a while. I'm not in Worcester tomorrow, have things that need to get done in the office, but I'm back up there on Thursday and Friday morning, then of course, next week- getting everything ready. It is really frustrating because a lot of safety participants aren't returning my phone calls to confirm that they are actually going to be attending the event. These are all people that committed to the event months ago and now they all seem to have disappeared off the face of the earth. I'm doing everything I can do- keep calling and leaving messages. I understand people are busy, but no one is so busy they can't make a quick phone. It is pretty difficult to have a Halloween/Child Safety event without safety participants. Things will work out and we will have a great event for the kids no matter what, but it is very frustrating when people are unresponsive, particularly when you really need them.

10 years ago, when I was 18, I had an internship at ABC News New York. Part of work included verifying facts for an upcoming documentary, so I had to make a lot of phone calls. It was incredible how fast phone calls were returned when you said you were calling from ABC News- of course no one knew that I was a lowly intern. It was fantastic and I wish I had that again.

I was thinking when I was driving home today about a comment someone made to me recently. They were talking about the economy and asked me what I was going to do with Project Smile- the veiled suggestion (not so veiled actually, since the next question they asked was when I was going to start looking for other work) was that we wouldn't survive the economic downturn. I answered the question as politely as I could- telling them how our overhead is low, etc. and also pointing out that our service becomes even greater in the face of economic downturn as the rates of domestic violence and abuse spike in times when families face even greater pressures. For someone to suggest that my organization, which has grown steadily for the last 5 years, is somehow going to fold because the economy is tanking, is pretty obnoxious. I fight for every penny that Project Smile raises and it never comes easily and I work hard to hold onto this dream, this vision that I see so clearly of Project Smile becoming a national charity, so that someday it will become a reality. I have stared down far greater adversaties when I was much younger than I am today and I am the better woman for it. I have seen first hand the tragedy of unrealized potential and broken dreams and I vowed many years ago to never be that person. So of course it is insulting when people suggest that the business you run, that you work so hard to make successful, isn't going to survive. We are going to do better than survive, we will grow and thrive.

Anyways, that also got me onto my next thoughts- how much I need an assistant. I don't mean that in the lazy sense, so I can farm out the work that I don't want to do- although that would be great- I need serious help because I can't get everything done and I'm not getting a sufficient amount accomplished by myself. I know I talk about this all the time, but I met someone today at a networking event that might be a good fit as an assistant. The issue is bottom line and I don't know what the best thing to do is. I know that the safest thing is to keep costs low and don't hire anyone, however, that is not necessarily the best decision. I'm not a gambler and I never make risky decisions. It is a lot to think about and I need to decide what the best course of action is for us. Of course it would be great to have volunteers who could help, but I haven't had much success in finding committed volunteers who can provide what we truly need. The flake factor with volunteers is incredibly high.

Well, it is 1:30 and I need to go to bed. I also have to write my list for tomorrow- have so much to do. I was back on track with exercising this morning, which was good. Until tomorrow friends...

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