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For the last two years, I’ve volunteered at Cottage Cove every Friday afternoon that I am in town. Which is most of them. We’re homebodies and don’t have anybody who lives close to visit, anyway.

CC is an afterschool program for underprivileged kids in a low-income area of Nashville. It’s a free program for the parents who are lucky enough to get their kids enrolled. There is a long waiting list, I believe, because it is well known as a safe place for these kids. It is run by Christians and therefore we have Bible study almost every day and try to go by Christian ethics. We have rules, however, and they are strictly enforced. Many of these kids don’t get any boundaries at home, and so the staff and volunteers at the Cove try to establish some with these children.

I really love being there. My duties change from week to week. Sometimes I help kids with homework (why can’t I do 4th grade math? is that bad?). Sometimes I just monitor Lego play. Often I help the kids memorize Bible verses; they are rewarded for every 10-verse sheet they complete. I think I’m one of the only volunteers mean enough to actually make the kids say the verses correctly to get credit for them.

One of my co-workers acted surprised today that I was still going to the Cove in my rather pregnant condition. It’s true that I can do less and less as the months go by. I can’t get on the floor. I can’t sweep floors without pain from bending over. And usually I have zero energy by the time I get through work and get there. But I still love it and I don’t want to give it up! I will miss those kiddos when I am out with the baby.

I had a sweet moment today with one of the kids that made me laugh a lot. As I said, I was assigned to Legos. At first it was just me and one kid, Shawn, who is in second grade, I think. Shawn had a little Lego police car. It had a prisoner in the back and was being driven by a Lego man with no head. Shawn explained that the no-head guy was a monster. So then when the car blew up, the monster couldn’t feel what was going on. The prisoner escaped. And then, Shawn informed me, the truck got fixed, because they went to AutoZone.

Hehe. (Shawn is the little guy in the picture in light blue.)

2 thoughts on “Fridays

  1. I think that it’s awesome that you go to be a part of these kids lives.

    I guarantee they appreciate those boundaries and actually view it as love.

  2. I have never been involved in a program like this but have heard many great things.

    Keep up the good work! You could be changing lives here!

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