Ops in Action: Heartland Farm

Earlier this year my workplace awarded me an opportunity to work at the charity of my choice for one week without using any vacation time. It's an amazing program that they offer each year to two applicants from the Operations group. I was thrilled with the award and immediately contacted Heartland to tell them that I was available for whatever project I could be most useful doing. I envisioned building sheds, repairing fences or stalls; things of that nature. It was a pretty big surprise to me that it all shook out for me to help out with one of the weeklong kid's camps! 

I showed up on Monday and surveyed my 'office' for the week. The view from the boardroom was amazing.

The meeting rooms were fantastically decorated.

My coworkers were definitely adorable. 
 The only thing I was apprehensive about was the kids. You know me....Miss Worst Case Scenario. If I can envision the whole thing going up in flames, I will be prepared to do something about it.  A lot of the kids I see around are raised so differently from the way I grew up. We were used to running around in the fields, the dirt and the bugs. Would these kids be ok with the 'less glamourous side' of being at the barn for an entire week? What is someone got hurt? We didn't have video games when I was young. Would these kids be surgically attached to their electronics so it would be a battle all week to get through to them? What if they asked me questions that I couldn't answer like,

 "Why does that sheep have three butts?"

What if the llama went on a rampage and held the swingset hostage so the kids couldn't play?

In the end, it turned out like it usually does.  Things went well. The kids left their cell phones at the door without a word.  Kids got dirty, scraped, stung and nipped. The llama DID hold the swingset hostage briefly. But everyone arrived at the end of the week cleaned up, bandaged, salved, happy and better humans for the experience. And I learned so much that it warrants another entry altogether. So Opps in Action? A success!


Dan Fraser said…
Glad you survived. Farms need kids.
Michelle said…
What an amazing things your employer – and Heartland – does! (You seriously rock, too. ;-)