Community Walk Down Eucalyptus Street
This week, I had been really blessed during my community walk down Eucalyptus Street with the other interns. We were conducting surveys in order to try and understand the opinions, desires, strengths, and issues that the neighbors voice about their neighborhood. In order to hear the opinions of the neighbors, we walked through different apartment complexes, houses, and condos for the first hour and 15 minutes with only 4 neighbors interested in answering questions on the survey. As one intern returned back to the office for a meeting, the other two interns and I stayed behind to see what other opportunities we could have in our encounters with neighbors. We walked into an apartment complex right across the street that seemed quiet on the outside but was (to my surprise) lively in the inside. It was filled with kids running around, a young couple talking outside, mothers walking in and out of their homes, and the smell of lunch still present in the air.
As two of the interns were conducting a survey on the second floor of the complex, I sat with a group of about eight boys who were playing Mario Kart on their Nintendo DS. One of the interns brought his baby toy Chihuahua who grabbed the attention of the boys who were waiting their turn on the Nintendo DS. We laughed when the Chihuahua licked one of the boys on the nose, had a conversation about the status of who was winning the race on Mario Kart, and talked about how long they had been living on Eucalyptus. During our conversation, I asked them whether they came out to the homework club at the Kingdom Causes office and they had never heard of it and they did not know where the office was. I told them about some activities that we had there such as the soccer event, movie night for UNITE!, and the summer art classes which I am currently planning with another intern. They seemed really interested in showing up to the art classes so one of the boys offered me his e-mail so that I could e-mail him about the class days and times. I couldn't believe that these boys did not know that minutes down the street, there is an office and an amazing staff who were running events and activities that were planned and readily available for these kids to participate in. From this experience, I was blessed that God allowed me to encounter these wonderful boys, I felt blessed in our conversation, and I felt blessed to connect to a portion of the neighborhood kids that I can now recognize by face and will hopefully soon recognize by name!