Sandra’s Lodge is an emergency intake family shelter for homeless single mothers and their children. The shelter opened in January of 1999 and is named in memory of a woman who was a former employee of M.H.S.A. and who dedicated much of her short life to helping others. Sandra was a strong advocate for addressing the needs of the homeless, the elderly and the helpless. The program is funded by the Department of Transitional Assistance and provides a safe environment with ancillary services to thirty-five homeless families. The essential goals of the program are to secure permanent, affordable housing for its residents and offer the appropriate support services which will enable the family to function independently.
This past Saturday, myself and a group of 15 or so BostonCares members visited Sandra’s Lodge in Waltham, MA to help clean up and paint some of the common areas. The place was in pretty bad shape, and while the majority of the volunteers were certainly no professional painters, I do think that the place looks much nicer overall; Cleaner, Brighter and hopefully a more pleasant residence for someone going through some very hard times.
I enjoyed it very much, more than I thought I would have of. The other volunteers were all very friendly and a handful of them very much perfectionists trying to do the best they could to get everything just right. The group leader was equally as helpful and friendly, keeping her cool even as we began to run out of supplies.
The time flew by, there was always something to do and I am sure a group of volunteers could spend many more weekends in projects of this sort. The music playing in the background added to the overall experience constantly playing songs that would put a smile on my face. 🙂
I look forward to doing more volunteering work of this type.