Delivering to the Magnolia Center

Kelsey Sizer ’12 is spending the term volunteering at the Magnolia Center with Campus Kitchen for her Poverty 102 field work placement. 

For my first trip to the Magnolia Center, I was nervous about interacting with the staff and the clients. When we walked in a couple of the participants ran to the door to greet us and a few of them introduced themselves and gave us hugs. I had no idea what the facility would look like, how many clients would be there, or how they would react to me. I was pleasantly surprised to find the building quainter than I imagined and the clients friendlier.  After we plated meals and served water, we sat down at the tables with the participants. One client, Rusty* showed me around the stage where they, as a theater troupe, The Magnolia Players, put on a play twice a year. It was interesting to see the clients each expressing themselves differently, even those who could not speak coherently. As I find out more about the program and what it provides, I realize how necessary centers like the Magnolia Center are for people with mental and physical disabilities. I have never found myself in a situation like this, so I found everything fascinating. I am really glad I chose the Magnolia Center as my class placement because I am really looking forward to returning and continuing to develop relationships with the clients, as well as the staff. I know the more time I spend there, the more comfortable I will feel and the more I will learn about the people there.

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