Friday, February 16, 2007

Management Days

Well, I spent the day talking with folks. That's what my job amounts to. Though it sounds like I don't enjoy it, that's not the case. It's amazing how the words move into action. So by talking to lots of folks, we're able to get lots done...

Anyway, what did we talk about today. Well, we talked to the community partners about the AmeriCorps program, what their responsibilities are, and what their members need to participate in. I also talked about drywalling Rozzina Manning's house, writing a recommendation for Kate to Samaritan's Purse, about Hands On Gulf Coast, AFH and the future of building, and there was probably something else in there.

The AFH conversation with Mike Grote was pretty interesting. They're working on their model home program and their funder is interested in perhaps expanding the program into a second phase. That means more homes for East Biloxi, which is pretty awesome. Mike also said he would provide some introductions to local folks whom I haven't yet met. These local folks would be connections to businesses. I talked a bit about my thoughts on where we're headed as an organization, and that's always exciting.

There's great potential for this place. There are so many talented, committed folks who want to be here long term. There are areas where our volunteers can have a big impact - education, public health, capactiy building, and (of course) physical building. They're broad and unrelated, but I think that we can support efforts in these areas by really working some unique new and existing partnerships.

A perfect example of an existing partnership is Kaiser Permanente. They recently came to visit us. A group of 30 or so employees worked in the houses and and painted a mural in Coastal Family Health Care's Gulfport clinic. John, the Kaiser employee who organized the trip, said he would be interested in planning a larger even, perhaps next February, that involved Coastal and more of the medical staff. Very cool. So, we have someone interested, we have work, we have the need, we just need to connect all the dots into a project. It's exciting to think about the lasting impact we can have on Gulf Coast.

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