WOW. I have been doing the countdown for about two months, but now I’m down to my last week as an AmeriCorps – it’s absolutely surreal. I started at the Tallahassee Red Cross last August and now, 11 months later, it’s time to go. If you’ve been keeping up with my posts you’ll know that I have loved every second of my term. Obviously, there have been a many difficult moments but overall I would not trade this experience for the world. It hasn’t even been a year but I feel that I have gained several years of experience and I am so thankful.
Right now, as things are winding down, I am just working on my July newsletter, recruiting volunteers to take over some of the roles I have held to make this transition process a smooth one and finishing up the last few outreach events I have us signed up for! Tomorrow should be fun as I’ll mostly be helping out our Summer Interns with their Summer Kids Day, which has seriously been a blast. They have put together such a great program; the last one they had brought in a LOT of kiddies, like over 40. Aside from that, I am practically all wrapped up! I have finished my binder with everything and anything our next AmeriCorps will need, as well as, leaving some helpful binders for new volunteers that will pick up my role as an Outreach Coordinator.
Oh, which by the way, we did get approved AmeriCorps for the upcoming term – WOOHOO!!! I think we may even have two this time! Receiving this news was like knowing you’re about to open up gifts on Christmas eve – pretty much, a huge relief!
For any of you out there in the Tallahassee area, or interested in becoming a new Tallahassee resident, you should definitely consider this opportunity! While the stipend was a little rough at times because I could not indulge as usual, I was still able to make ends meet. Now, that I’m practically done I am very excited to get my Segal Grant as I totally have NOT even tried paying off my college debt. I’ve read on other blogs to not use the grant to pay off loans all at one (something with it negatively affecting your tax returns). I’ve read it on many blogs and have heard it from a former AmeriCorps who now is a Disaster Specialist in our region. So, please be sure to note this, as I surely am!
So, as many of you may know, I have been job hunting for quite a while. Since March. I can proudly say that as of last week I have been hired and will not be left jobless! My co-worker and friend at the Red Cross found out through Facebook that her friend who is the External Affairs director at the Florida Division of Emergency Management (DEM) was hiring – my friend sent her my resume and I instantly got an interview. It was possibly one of the longest interviews I have ever had, almost two hours, but it left me so incredibly excited and ready to become a part of their agency. Starting on July 10th I will start working at DEM as their Social Media and Outreach Coordinator; so basically, a very similar role as my current one! My new boss and the other ladies in the department seem so sweet and have already shown so much enthusiasm and positive energy welcoming me to their team. I feel ready to take on this new stage in life and am really thrilled to meet new people.
I am sad to leave the Red Cross but at the same time I am ready to take on this new adventure. Once you join the Red Cross I feel like you can never really leave it behind, so I’ll be staying on as an active volunteer. I think the best way to continue to stay involved and not over exhaust myself will be by teaching one of our disaster classes on a monthly basis.
I’m going to miss the amazing staff and of course our incredible volunteers – thank you AmeriCorps and Red Cross for this term!