A farewell from Community Service Arizona.
The Westcoast Blogger
Dear Parents of our Arizona Heroes,
As I sit here at the airport-waiving goodbye, I cannot help but smile watching all of your kids. It has been an amazing, albeit short week, extremely rewarding and enriching.
Our last day at the hospital we spent the morning reading and spending time with all the patients and getting our last quality time with those that affected us so much. We also each had the chance, in groups of 4 to go to the 2nd floor where all the babies and children are located. Although it was something everyone was so excited to do, it was a little bit of a shock to see some of these innocent babies, and kids their own age with so many machines attached to them to keep them alive.
We were all thrilled to learn that Hacienda has beds for all parents inside the kid’s rooms and has a house where parents can stay for free for up to a month. Stella and Weslee found out that Hacienda has volunteers that come in every day just to rock babies and Marc was told, to all our relief, that most of the babies usually get better and go home.
At lunch a few students did an incredible thing. Michael, Drew and Taylor volunteered to feed some patients their lunch, no easy feat I promise you.
After lunch we had the chance to entertain everyone with our performance. Rachel rocked to the James Bond theme, Nicola played an awesome little ‘purple’ riding hood and they ended the play with a great ‘We Are Family’. Your kids were amazing at including all the patients in the room to make the play interactive for them.
That night we feasted at a Greek taverna and enjoyed a movie.
Sunday was our day off and we kicked it off with a brunch, followed by a full day at Wet ‘N Wild Waterpark. Everyone loved the lazy river, no one more than Drew who spent no less than 2 hours chilling in a tube!! India was thrilled by the giant falling bucket of water and Marc and Corey challenged the waves in the wave pool.
After a feast at the Olive Garden we enjoyed an hour of unlimited games at Gameworks. Michael was the undisputed air hockey champion.
On Monday we all eagerly went to the volunteer at an animal shelter, the 2nd largest in the US after LA. There are over 600 dogs sheltered there getting a 2nd chance on life. This was one of the highlights of the trip for us as we got the chance to walk some dogs and give them a break from the kennel. Taylor had a mini poodle that did not leave her side while Weslee had a super cute mutt that plunked himself down on her lap and would not get up. Corey and Drew got some of the happiest dogs any of us have seen while Stella and Rachel took care of a couple of twin puppy mini pit bulls. We took time to each walk and cuddle with at least 3 separate dogs hopefully calming them down enough that someone will walk by them and want to adopt them.
After lunch while Stella and Corey helped get water to the dogs the rest of us got to spend time with the kittens. Nicola and India were naturals.
That night we ordered in Chinese and tested our skills at bowling. Look out for Rachel she was the only one to break 100.
Our last day started at Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore. This was hard work but we all understood that it is through the ReStore that Habitat can raise the money it needs to build homes (over 500 000 of them so far worldwide). Michael and Stella braved the sun to help manager Mike while the rest of us did every project we were assigned to – something no one was expecting. Corey was the expert with the palette mover and has a bright career ahead of him.
Our last night together we dined at the Hard Rock Cafe and then did unlimited rides like go-karting, mini golf and bumper boats at Crackerjax!
So now the trip is over and we hope your kids come back with a different perspective and better for having given of themselves. It is truly amazing what they have accomplished and you should honestly all be extremely proud of them.
Good luck with back to school!