16 December 2006, 22:51
by Giorgio Chaudy
The Youth Service Initiative (YSI) supported the International Day of Volunteers, a UN-day, by creating a project to motivate others to do volunteer work. We did a project to thank various volunteer organizations in Utrecht for their efforts.
Saturday, the 2nd of December, the members of YSI and three other volunteers, Patrick, Harun and Abraham, collected goodies at the homes in Utrecht. With those goodies, we wanted to fill up Thank you-baskets for various volunteer organizations in Utrecht, to thank them for their efforts.
In little groups, we went with shopping trolleys door to door to collect goodies like cookies, chocolate and fruit. The people of Utrecht were very enthusiastic about our idea and gave generously. So the collecting of products was a cheerful experience!
At the end of the day we had many crates filled with nice food, so we could fill up the nice wicker baskets until the top.
Finally, we added a picture of all the volunteers of this project to the baskets, and a nice card with the message: "Utrecht says thank you!"
The delivering of the Thank you-baskets to the 14 organizations (which we found through our contacts and via the internet) was definitely joyful! Everyone was so thankful, happily surprised and honored!
Via this project, we got to know interesting organizations, and also there were people who wanted to know more about us, which was nice.
All in all, this project - in fact, the first real YSI-project! - was a great success.
It had so many nice aspects: by collecting goodies, we helped the people of Utrecht to thank their volunteers, which of course was pleasant for both sides. Moreover, we met many new people, and everyone was happy!
Consequently, we really would like to thank everyone who contributed to the success of this project: the people of Utrecht, our volunteers and of course the organizations!
The reflections of the volunteers Patrick and Harun:
"For me, it was the first time to go door to door. So it was still a 'bit exiting to see how the people would react. To be honest, I expected it to be not such an easy job to have people give us goodies to fill up the baskets for volunteer organizations. But it went really well, maybe because we didn't ask for money but for real products. That was new for me, but also for the people at the homes. The reactions differed; it was always a surprise who would open the door. But the people were very positive, as we weren't collecting for ourselves. And sometimes the volunteers themselves opened the door! J
When we were done, Justino and I had received quite some food and drinks. Far more than we expected! So I was quite happy, although it wasn't for me. So yes, it was a successful day!"
"I went from Alkmaar to Utrecht to help for the 5th of December, the International Day of Volunteers. On the 2nd of December, we went in groups to collect goodies, to offer to volunteers. We collected a lot of nice food, thank you everyone! I had a really fun time doing this job".