Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Volunteer? Anyone?

One issue we deal with all the time is how to use volunteers at Central Dallas CDC. A big part of the problem is that we are just so very busy. Even if a volunteer would help us over the long term, sometimes we don’t have time right now to explain to them what kind of help we need.

Another problem can be the availability and skills of the volunteer. Central Dallas CDC does sophisticated real estate development and we often don’t have extensive need for unskilled volunteers. Or the work we do have available for volunteers without special skills isn’t very interesting for them. Not many people are willing to spend their leisure time answering the telephone or filing papers.

Other times a large group wants to do a project together, and that isn’t always easy. Imagine you have the opportunity to have 100 people work for you for a day—sounds great when you first think of it. But if they don’t have any skills and neither the group nor you have any money to buy materials, then it can be difficult to find a useful way to use that labor.

More often than you might think, we get a volunteer with special skills—a lawyer or an architect or an information specialist—and they can be absolutely invaluable. Then we get the type of help that we probably couldn’t afford to hire.

We could use that kind of help on a project right now. The picture below is of the flagpoles on the 18th story of CityWalk.

If you look really close, you might be able to see that although the pulleys are still there, the ropes have all rotted away. We could really use a volunteer to climb up the flagpole and put on a new rope—because we haven’t figured out how to do it yet.

You better not be scared of heights. The flagpoles start at about 200 feet above the ground; the roof isn’t that large; and there aren’t any railings.

1 comment:

  1. John, Did you go to UNC-Chapel Hill in Comp. Lit in the mid-1970s? If so, I was influenced by your and Willy's devotion to the High Modernists. If this is you, please email me at riggsda@drexel.edu and tell me what you've done over the past 30 years. -- Don Riggs