Mission Statement: The PV Volunteers are an ecumenical community of diverse individuals. By providing a service experience in a variety of settings, we respond to human need, form relationships and encourage change and growth both in ourselves and with those we serve.

Visit our website to find out more: www.pvprogram.org

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Welcome to the world, to our newest PV...

Please join us in welcoming to the world our newest PV. Sophia Elizabeth Poirier was born November 23, 2009 at 4:17PM. She was 7 lbs. 13 oz. and 20 inches long. Mom, Dad and Baby are all doing great.... Congratulations Tricia and David!!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Special Thanksgiving in Brooklyn

On November 18, 2009, TGIA celebrated its 8th annual Thanksgiving dinner, complete with delicious dishes made by the young women. This has always been one of our more festive meetings of the year, and we always spend time sharing what we are thankful for. From there we discussed plans for next week's TGIA Bake Sale, the proceeds of which will help support TGIA's service trip to our fellow community in West Virginia. The evening was filled with laughter and bonding, and the group photos are always such a challenge (and joy!).

TGIA sends heartfelt wishes for a happy and healthy Thanksgiving to all!

Giving thanks for each other!!!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

In Memorium...

Clarence Tilley passed away unexpectedly this past Wednesday, November 11th. Clarence has been a faithful volunteer to the Itmann Food Bank and will be missed greatly. Many of you will also remember Clarence as a faithful friend and a big help to Fred Cross during his last year. Clarence's presence in the community will be missed. Please keep his family and friends in your prayers during this difficult time.

New Beginnings...

It has been awhile since we posted last, but there has been a lot of changes in the last few weeks. As of November first, we are officially independent of the Passionists, the physical office is now in Pineville, WV and cyber offices are set up in Cincinnati and Seattle. It is our hope that this transition goes as smoothly as possible and you as a volunteer will not notice a difference.

While all these changes are going on, TGIA, the young women's empowerment group in Bedford Stuyvesant continues meeting weekly. They are geering up for a bake sale at the church to help fund their service trip to WV in April. We will post the date when we know it so if you are in the NYC area you can stop by and support them.

Another upcoming event for the program is a special Mass for the PVs being held Sunday, December 13th at 3:00pm at Our Lady of Monserrate in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, NY. The provincial and council will be saying the Mass to bless the transisiton to independence of the program after 37 years of direct connection with their community. We hope to see as many of you there as can attend.

We will try and update more frequently...

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

A few pictures, more to come...

PV's take a chilly, wet walk to the shore while in Bradley Beach for the PV Evaluation and Reunion Weekend

The view from the front porch of our house/office in Pineville, WV. Unfortunately, the picture does not show how vibrant the fall colors really were.

Not a bad setting for an office if I say so myself

From West Virginia to the Jersey Shore...

It has been a busy week...Tuesday we packed up the van and left our office for good in Union City, NJ. Wednesday morning we headed down to our house in Pineville to set up our new office. OK, we didn't really set it up, but everything is now in the house. We were also able to run around and do some much needed set up work as well. Unfortunately, it was a really quick trip as we headed out again on Friday morning. We do have to say however, that we think we must have hit the area during peak leaf changing season, it was absolutely gorgeous. I hope to put a few pictures up from my phone, but they don't capture the vibrant colors very well.

After getting home late Friday night, we turned around Saturday morning and headed up to the Jersey Shore for our annual fall reunion/evaluation weekend. It was a wonderful weekend, unfortunately, the weather wasn't too cooperative. But we didn't let that stop us from taking a walk down to the beach. And don't think we didn't get any work done, we spent a large part of the day on Saturday going through the evaluations and making suggestions for next summer. We were treated to a wonderful dinner on Saturday night by our gracious hostess Jo. Besides the PVs, Jo had invited members from her church who were integral in the pasta dinner fundraiser for the PVs the week before. (story still forth-coming) . It was a wonderful night and a wonderful weekend.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

A Special Person

As we have been preparing to move our office, we have been going through a lot of files and pictures. While going through pictures, we found several wonderful pictures of Fanny Talbot. As most of you know, Miss Fanny passed away this past August after a long and painful struggle with ALS. We were grateful to be able to present at a memorial service held at Our Lady of Monserrate in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, NY on September 19th. It was a wonderful celebration of her life and showed what an amazing woman she was. Her commitment to her neighborhood, especially the children, has been an inspiration to many.

The pictures below are from the Passionist Presence Dinner in 2005 where Fanny received the "St. Paul of the Cross Award" for her service in Bedford Stuyvesant. In addition to Fanny, the four founding members of TGIA (Corinthia, Luisa, Tiffany and Marilyn) came to the dinner to show their appreciation for all that Fanny did for their community.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Directories, Evaluations, Spaghetti Dinners...

It is a busy time right now in PVland. The 2009 Summer Directory has gone out to the volunteers and evaluations have been sent. Next on the schedule is a fundraising spaghetti dinner and the reunion, both on the Jersey Shore. We hope to see many of you in the upcoming weeks.

TGIA has continued to meet each Wednesday. We are working with the young women on resume building, job interviewing skills etc. Over the past couple of weeks the young women have written resumes and cover letters and next Wednesday, Oct. 7th, we will be doing mock interviews. If any of you are in the NYC area and want to come and be one of our "interviewers", we would love to see you!

Finally a little transition news... we are in the process of archiving the materials of the Passionist Volunteers 37 year history, while we begin to pack up our office in Union City, NJ. We will be making the "official" move to Pineville Oct. 14th. We are also in the process of switching over our email and web addresses. Our new email will be pvprogram@gmail.com and our website will be www.pvprogram.org. Look for a whole new look on the website, to be launched at the beginning of November!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

TGIA kicks off its 7th Year

Last night the first meeting of Bedford Stuyvesant's Teen Girls in Action (TGIA) took place. As is our tradition, we kick off the first meeting checking in with each to see how everyone's summer was and how the beginning of the school is year is going. We then spoke about to upcoming year. We decided on monthly themes for our weekly meetings and talked about different service opportunities TGIA would like to undertake. Of course number one on their list was a return trip to West Virginia. They also decided to do bake sales through out the year to raise money to support their trip.
On tap for next weeks meeting...resume writing. We will be spending the rest of September and October on job skills.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

35 Stories - 35 Years

This summer we published a book to celebrate the rich history of the Passionist Volunteer Program. This project began on the Program's 35th anniversary, so that is where it received it's title, 35 Stories, 35 Years. It is a 80 page book full of pictures and stories written by volunteers themselves about their experiences as a PV. It is a great book if you are a PV or if you just want to be inspired by the stories that are shared in its pages. Books are available for a suggested donation of $20, which includes shipping costs. If you are interested in receiving a book, please email us at pvprogram@gmail.com

We are back in the office

Greetings from New Jersey! We are back from the summer programs and are in full swing of transitioning to our new program. This past Sunday we had our first meeting of our newly formed Board of Directors. Luckily, there is a lot energy around getting this whole process going. It is going to be a lot of work, but in the end with so many dedicated, committed volunteers we have faith that the PVs will continue and grow strong into the future.

Check back for updates on the latest PV news...

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Week 2 Pictures from Bed-Stuy

A PV helping campers with a weaving project

A PV weaving specialist helps teach the kids her craft

The middle age group group shot

One of our former campers, Junior, stopped by to show off his son

Week two group shot with the junior counselors

The PV community working on their own art project

The male PV contingent helped put the quilt together

During the carnival a PV gets excited as a camper excels

The annual talent show always starts off with a number by some PVs.

This is actually the week 1 group shot, but I didn't have it to post last week : )

A special music program by a visiting PV had the oldest group listening intently

A camper making their quilt square

All smiles here!

The whole camp gathered in this room to thank our special helper, Dorothy

It's all about peace in this camp.

The oldest group on their field trip to the Museum of the City of New York. We got there a little early so we headed over to central park for a little bit.

A beautiful spot in central park.

Junior counselors working with the youngest kids

Our two birthday girls!

What beautiful smiles!

The oldest group's group shot

Our annual junior counselor dinner is always a good time

Talent show participants...

A camper picking their prize at the carnival

The campers quilt

Who said the games were just for the campers!

A camper playing Guitar Hero

Friday, August 28, 2009

We awoke this morning to a gray and rainy day. I have to admit that the coolness felt really good, but the rain certainly put a damper on carnival plans for the kids. In all 12 years we have had the camp, we have never had rain on the last day. We quickly made some adjustments as to where the kids would go inside for the different carnival activities, and then we were thrown another curve ball. As we started to head downstairs to make lunches and set up the room, we looked out the front window and noticed that a funeral was getting ready to begin in the church, the room right above where we feed the kids. Knowing that it would be impossible to keep the kids quiet, we moved them over to one of the classrooms for lunch. Again we were impressed how easily the PVs and the kids just rolled with the changes. After lunch we brought the kids back over to the social hall for the annual Peace Camp Talent Show, completely organized by the junior counselors. Once again we were impressed with all that the kids shared. We caught it all on video and will try and upload it for your enjoyment. Once the talent show ended it was carnival time. The kids were free to roam from game to game, craft to craft. It is always a fun way to end the camp. We couldn't have done the camp without the wonderful group of PVs who played a part, whether in person or by writing a curriculum, and the wonderful 12 junior counselors who play such an important part. THANK YOU!!!

After a quick clean up of all the classrooms, the PVs gathered together for one final closing. During camp the kids made a beautiful quilt, so for reflection, we used the whole idea of the quilt as our reflecting tool, reflecting about the different parts of the quilt and the symbolism of the quilt. It was a bit bittersweet, being the last closing of the 2009 Summer Program.

After reflection we went out for a celebratory dinner in Brooklyn. This last dinner of the summer is always a highlight for us, especially after what we feel was a successful summer in both WV and Brooklyn. Thank you everyone that played a part in making this such a successful summer.

** Bed-Stuy week two pictures will be posted shortly **

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Today was our last day in our individual classes with the kids. Another day full of special things for the kids. Not only was there a PV birthday, but one of the younger kid's birthdays was celebrated as well. Her mom brought in a beautiful princess birthday cake to share with everyone. The middle kids received an extra treat of having their turn at weaving, like the older kids did the previous day. For the older group of kids they had another special guest, a PV who lives locally came in for the day to talk about music with the kids. A good day was had by all!

Traditionally, the last Thursday of each camp we invite all the junior counselors over to share dinner with us. It was wonderful to eat our baked Ziti and look around the room and see all the dedicated young people helping in their community. We topped off the meal with a birthday cake for one of our favorite PVs.

After all the junior counselors left the volunteers gathered for evening reflection. Tonight we were given a bunch of different art supplies and were asked to created something that represented our day. It was fun to get a chance to use our creative sides!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Today was a great day for camp. The kids came a little late, most coming after lunch, but they came. The oldest group had another special day, with a special project. One of our volunteers different weaving projects with the kids. They were thoroughly entranced with their projects. The other two groups continued with their study of the arts. The middle group worked on their quilts and did english mad libs. The youngest group did a lot of one on one reading time.

This being Wednesday evening, it is a free evening for the volunteers. Everyone is headed out for a fun filled evening, some meeting up with old friends, others catching a comedy show and others settling for a relaxing evening out.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Today was the field trip with the oldest age group. We took the group to the Museum of the City of New York, the same place we took the younger group last week, but did a different exhibit. The older group got a general introduction to the museum. The tour started with an excellent 25 minute video on the history of New York. Afterward, the guide talked about the building of the Brooklyn Bridge, transportation throughout the city, the changes that took place in Manhattan and the history of toys in the city. The kids were excellent. They were very interactive and seemed to learn a lot. We were all quite impressed.

After camp we had a little bit of downtime and then it was time for dinner. Dinner was a simple, but very scrumptious meal of beans and rice, and salad. We moved pretty much right from dinner into reflection. We reflected on a Abraham Lincoln quote that was in the museum, “I like to see a man proud of the place in which he lives. I like to see a man live so that his place will be proud of him.” We took the quote and reflected on the kids in the camp and what they have done that should make their community proud of them.

The evening was capped off with a ice cream run to the grocery store. Klondike Bars, Bunny Tracks and Pistachio ice cream for all. Yum yum!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Week 1 Pictures (in no particular order....)

On the way to the Museum of the City of New York. We love our camp shirts!

Friday night as a community, we went out to eat and then walked back across the Brooklyn Bridge. Even though it rained on and off during the evening, our walk across the bridge was dry.

A group of junior counselors getting together to plan the upcoming talent show that ends the camp each year.

Sidewalk chalk is always a hit out back on "recess"

More sidewalk chalk

A happy camper!

Hanging out in the back

A great shot of all the different activities that go on simultaneously in the parking lot.

Bubbles anyone?

The older group works on an assignment to recreate a Van Gogh painting

The front of the church where all the action happens

The group listening intently to the museum guide

The middle age group

Look at this double dutch

Lunch time at Peace Camp

The Brooklyn Bridge from South Street Seaport where we had the end of the week dinner celebration. There is a great group shot from here, if someone has it could you email it me?

Junior counselor and camper, Awwwww!

Setting up for lunch