Need in Deed is fortunate to work with many wonderful community partners. These organizations and individuals share their time and expertise with NID classes at all different points in the project process. From examining an issue’s causes and effects to determining a service that will meet an authentic community need, community partners help us facilitate meaningful service learning experiences every day.
This month, we are highlighting one truly “stand out” community partner: Margie Winters, Coordinator of Service Learning for Project HOME. Since joining Project HOME 18 months ago, Margie has worked with approximately ten Need in Deed schools. She explains, “I was brought in to a newly created position at Project HOME when it became clear that there was a need to connect our organization more effectively with schools. We have a wonderful Volunteer Coordinator and Speakers’ Bureau, and we often received offers from schools to provide service to the organization. Since my background is in education, I was able to see both sides, and bring the two together. “
The partnership between Need in Deed and Project HOME has been synergistic. The Need in Deed students gain the opportunity to hear stories directly from individuals who have experienced homelessness. Margie explains the importance of this step, “The students are naturally curious; they are very open to learning about our clients’ journeys. They ask questions—‘what is your life like?’ and ‘what do you do all day?’ and they are answered honestly. We can see the moment when the light bulb goes on and they truly gain an understanding and empathy. This is a gift for Project HOME, because we strive to create awareness and engagement around homelessness. The students almost always want to help, and our hope is that they become involved in some capacity, now and into the future.”
We thank Margie and Project HOME for their partnership and look forward to working together for many years to come.