Hands On Orlando - Volunteer Central Florida Hands On Orlando - Volunteer Central Florida

Hands On Orlando - Volunteer Central Florida

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Project Coordinator Profiles

Brittany Brathwaite

What prompted you to become a Project Leader?
I fell in love with Hands On Orlando a few years ago after my first volunteer project that HOO managed at Evans High School. From that point on I regularly committed to volunteer every week. I decided, why not make a bigger impact by leading the projects that I had become so passionate about.

How important is your role as a Project Leader in terms of causing successful volunteer projects?
As a Project Leader it is important to motivate and encourage the volunteers. It is vital to set a positive tone throughout the project with effective communication skills.  By providing a clear sense of purpose, projects are completed successfully through volunteer involvement.

Please share an experience you’ve had on a project that everyone should know about.
Hands On Orlando partners up with the Coalition for the Homeless. We put on a birthday party for homeless children by providing entertainment ranging from games and activities to cake and punch, birthday gifts and raffle-giveaways.  Seeing all the children at the party with big smiles is a heartwarming and unforgettable feeling. For a few hours these children are able to forget about life’s stresses and enjoy a day of food, fun, games and companionship.

What special skills or qualities are needed to become a successful Project Leader?
A PL must possess a giving spirit and a drive to assist the community in a positive way. They should also be friendly, encouraging and have a passion to make a difference.

How has becoming a Project Leader impacted you personally?
Becoming a PL has changed my life dramatically. I have gained a feeling of personal empowerment and social connection. I have grown to truly understand the importance of not taking anything for granted.  Also I realize the importance of ”giving back” no matter how big or small the deed, because an act of kindness can influence someone’s life in a big way.

What advice would you give to others interested in becoming a Project Leader?
Be the change you wish to see by stepping up to the plate. Allow your love of helping people influence and inspire others, the same way you were impacted.

Elijah Jennings

What prompted you to become a Project Leader?
I heard about Hands on Orlando through my friend, who is a Project Leader.  She told me about the organization and how it solved community problems by empowering people to make a difference.  I finally joined her on a project and had an amazing time and felt a sense of accomplishment.  I signed up for various projects and noticed the demonstration of leadership and enthusiasm performed by different PLs. This, along with the drive to empower and do greater works within my community, prompted my desire to become a Project Leader.

How important is your role as a Project Leader in terms of causing successful volunteer projects?
My role as a PL is vital.  Each project has its own tasks and duties that need to be completed, and it is routine to have a Project Leader assigned to ensure that the assignment is complete.  But in order to make a project truly successful, it takes more than completion. It takes dedication, creativity, leadership, drive and passionate volunteers.

Please share an experience you’ve had on a project that everyone should know about.
When I first started volunteering with Hands On Orlando, I signed up to participate in its children’s birthday party at the Coalition for the Homeless.  The party was for all the children that had a birthday that month. I was able to interact and play games with all the children. The experience was remarkable and their smiles were indescribable.

What special skills or qualities are needed to become a successful Project Leader?
Motivation is probably the most important skill needed.  A person can have the ability, creativity, and leadership, but it takes motivation to apply the skills and qualities needed to be a Project Leader.

How has becoming a Project Leader impacted you personally?
Becoming a PL has made me more aware of the environment and what really occurs in our community.  This position has elevated my leadership skills and has further enhanced my willingness to be more involved in volunteering and improving our community.

What advice would you give to others interested in becoming a Project Leader?
It's a great way to have a positive impact.

Jason Martin

What prompted you to become a Project Leader?
I originally got involved with Hands On Orlando to make a difference in the community. Once I started volunteering I wanted to become a PL because I felt I could make an even greater impact. Not only would I be helping the community, but I would be helping others to help the community as well.

How important is your role as a Project Leader in terms of causing successful volunteer projects?
In order for a project to be successful, several requirements need to be met. First, the project needs to be accomplished, and for this all the credit goes to the hard work of the volunteers. Second, the volunteers need to feel involved and useful. This is where the Volunteer Leader plays a big part. If everyone is taking part and feeling good about what they are doing, then they are more likely to volunteer again. Everyone should gain by being a part of a Hands On Orlando project.

Please share an experience you’ve had on a project that everyone should know about.
One Sunday at the Hubbard House we served a family who had just checked in. They were obviously worried and distraught over the future of their family member. When we handed them their food you could see the gratitude in their faces. Serving them dinner might have been a little thing, but it was one less thing for them to worry about and they greatly appreciated it.

What special skills or qualities are needed to become a successful Project Leader?
You need to be flexible, able to listen well, think on the fly, and learn from others. But mostly you need to want to have fun and help others.

How has becoming a Project Leader impacted you personally?
So much can be gained by being a PL. It has allowed me to grow as a leader, and this growth can be seen in all facets of my life.

What advice would you give to others interested in becoming a Leader?
Do it and I guarantee you will love it.

Tracy Baggott

What prompted you to become a Project Leader?
I became a Project Leader because I like to volunteer.  Being a PL, you get to volunteer and connect even more with who you are helping and other volunteers.

How important is your role as a Project Leader in terms of causing successful volunteer projects?
Project Leader is an important role in having successful projects, but projects cannot be successful without great volunteers.  The PL’s role is to help guide the volunteers to complete projects, but the volunteers are the ones who make the project a success.

Please share an experience you’ve had on a project that everyone should know about.
All my volunteer projects have been very memorable, but the one that stands out is Soapy Saturday.  We pair up with Clean the World to sort or clean donated hotel bathroom items to be sent to devastated areas all over the world.  Doing this project makes me think about all the bathroom items that are discarded after someone checks out of a hotel.  Bath items are hard to come by in impoverished areas.

What special skills or qualities are needed to become a successful Project Leader?
To become a successful PL you need to enjoy working with all kinds of people in the community.  One needs to enjoy what they do and encourage others to lend a hand.

How has becoming a Project Leader impacted you personally?
I have become a stronger, more confident leader and it also has helped me get more involved with my community.

What advice would you give to others interested in becoming a Project Leader?
Becoming a Project Leader will change your life in so many ways.  Once you do one project, you will want to do more.