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

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Usually this is the "picture post," but you will have to be patient with us this week.  With our moving yesterday and today, and adjusting to our new cozy space, we haven't had a chance to upload some pictures.  It is our hope to get them up tomorrow, so please check back.

Friday, July 30, 2010

"If I have been of service, if I have glimpsed more of the nature and essence of ultimate good, if I am inspired to reach wider horizons of thought and action, if I am at peace with myself, it has been a successful day."  Alex Noble

Reflection last night focused on love, the pure simplicity of love and what it can do.  We were asked to shared a time we saw love or a "new and a good."  Once again it was a beautiful night of sharing.

As with all Fridays, the day was spent on activities other than home repair. This unique day really gives everyone a chance to connect with the people of Wyoming County and the agencies in the county who do work throughout the year.  We feel it is really important to realize that we are just one small part of the puzzle here.

Today we had the last day of Rainforest Camp. We had the largest number of kids on the last day and everyone had a GREAT time.  The camp culminated with the kids giving a special performance to the Volunteers.  Thanks again to all who helped plan and implement this camp!

Today was also the last day of the summer long tutoring program.  The kids progressed academically SO much this summer.  Our hats go off to them and especially to our Summer Long PVs who did a wonderful job with the program, taking it to new heights.

Another large group went to Glen Rogers Manor again.  This has been one of the highlights of the summer.  EVERYONE seems to be having such a great time with the residents.  After Banana Bingo, volunteers stayed to visit with the residents and even paint a few nails!

Volunteers also took the opportunity to go visit with Wyoming County residents they had met in previous summers. Each volunteer had a great time catching up with their friends.

The final activity of the day was a HUGE one.  Everyone chipped in and helped to pack and move the majority of the program from the house to the school.  Everything was pretty much moved by 1:00 which was fantastic. Besides the packing and moving, folks chipped in to help with the final cleaning of the school.  We cannot thank everyone enough for all their help!

Since it was our last night in the school we decided to try and finish up all the leftovers.  It was a smorgasbord of the weeks meals and they were just as good the second time around!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Thursday, July 29, 2010

"The real voyage of discovery consists not seeing new landscapes but in having new eyes."  Marcel Proust

Reflection last night was focused on change, and little differences that we can make.  We shared when we have made a difference and when someone made a difference to us.  It was really amazing to hear everyone's stories.

Today was our last day of home repair being based at the school.  Tomorrow, besides our normal Friday sites, we will be moving all of our belongings to the house in Pineville which will be our home base for the last week of the program.

Today's home repair sites....We are getting REALLY close to finishing up out in Hanover.  We are waiting for the final flooring to arrive and finishing up a lot of little things throughout the house.  We continued out at the site in Mullens, finishing up runs to the dump and started dry walling the ceiling.  Great progress today.  We also sent a crew out to our friend up in Glen Rogers to power wash his trailer. We will head back out there on Monday to finish up with his roof.  They finished up early enough that some folks from this site made an impromptu dump run for us.  We also started a new site just up the road from the school to work on some plumbing and flooring issues.  It turns out we underpinned their house in 2000 and it still looks fabulous

We also had day four of our Rainforest Camp. The kids are having a great time this summer and are eagerly anticipating the last day tomorrow.

Tonight for dinner we are being treated to breakfast for dinner with a menu of scrambled eggs, home fries and ham.  Yummy!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

"Shared joy is a double joy; shared sorrow is half a sorrow."  Swedish Proverb

Last night we reflected on solidarity and shared our new and goods of the day.  It is always wonderful to be reminded each night, what a special part of the program reflection is.

Today we finished up three sites!  The painting at the house in Jesse was finished, the year long house was finished and the food bank was finished.  Thank you to EVERY volunteer who has worked at these sites, and there have been many.

We also had crews continue in Mullens taking trips to the dump and continue up in Hanover at the flood site.  Both sites are moving along really well.  We are looking forward to seeing these all complete.

The non-home repair sites of the day were Rainforest Camp and tutoring.  We picked up four new campers!  As usual, all had a great time.  The tutoring program continues to thrive.

Tonight's dinner is a bit of a sad occasion since we have to say goodbye to Charlotte for the year.  She has been a tremendous presence to all the PVs this summer.  For dinner tonight we are having delicious chili and cornbread.  Yummy.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

"To find the universal elements enough; to find the air and the water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an evening saunter...to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be elated over a bird's nest or a wildflower in spring - these are some of the rewards of the simple life."  John Burroughs

In reflection last night, we were asked to reflect on what it was that we were looking for, when we decided to come to West Virginia.  An analogy of a doughnut was used and what we were missing was the hole.  We were even treated to doughnut holes at the end!

Today's home repair sites went wonderfully.  After a downpour first thing in the morning, we finished up the roof in Glen Rogers and we are almost finished in Hanover, Jesse and at the house in Pineville.  We also started a site in Mullens, helping to clean out a basement and haul trash to the dump.  After it is all cleaned up we will be replacing the ceilings for the home owner.

Today was also day 2 of Rainforest Camp.  Walking through and listening to their laughter and their singing, it was easy to see that everyone was having a great time.

Tonight for dinner we are have pasta and sauce.  Not just any sauce though, homemade sauce that has been in the process of being made for over 24 hours.  Yummy, yummy!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Monday, July 26, 2010

"The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak."  
Hans Hofmann

We finally had a work day today with no rain! A crew headed up to Hanover to work on the floors and to install cabinets.  The place is really coming together and we hope to be pretty much done by the end of the week...pictures to follow...

Another crew headed back to Jesse and continued to paint the house we have been working on for the last couple of weeks.  The first coat is on the whole house now and it looks great.

We also sent a small roofing crew up to Glen Rogers to work on a porch roof.  They ended up getting a great deal of help from a friend, the young man that we met the first summer and has been a big part of the program through the years but we hadn't seen in a couple of years.  The volunteers had a great time with him and said he plans to join them again tomorrow.

A crew met up for a food drop-off from the Mountaineer Food Bank for the Itmann Food Bank and continued on to the food bank to help unload and to paint the floor.

A small crew also went to PV Headquarters (aka our rental house in Pineville) to replace the bathtub, shower and toilet.  A big project, but a much needed project.

And finally, we started Rainforest Camp, our Glen Rogers Craft Camp.  It was a great first day of camp.  The kids had fun and the volunteers had a great time.  All in all, a wonderful day!

Tonight for dinner we were treated to lasagna, veggies and rolls,  And for dessert, homemade peach cobbler and homemade ice cream.  Yum, yum in the tum tum.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Another wonderful PV Community Day!  There are 34 volunteers this week, many of whom who do not know each other, so we had fun getting to know each other with PV Bingo.  The goal was to find PVs who matched the description in each square and have them sign it.  The first player to get Bingo got a chocolate bar, yummy! After Bingo we moved into the gym for an intense game of kickball.  We a lot of kids here this week, there was a lot of fun energy for the game.

The afternoon was spent orientating and reorientation the new and newly arrived PVs, sharing dinner together (thanks summer long PVs for preparing!) and finishing the evening off with our traditional commissioning service and job sites. It is strange to think that this is the last community day in the school this year.  The summer has gone so fast...

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Friday, July 23, 2010

Friday, July 23, 2010

"Each day is a new canvas to paint upon. Make sure your picture is full of life and happiness, and at the end of the day you don't look at it and wish you had painted something different."  Author Unknown

Did God make it Wyoming County?  This was the question posed to us during reflection.  When seeing the devastation of the land and the poverty that we sometimes comes across it can be easy to forget that God is down here.  In case you were wondering, the group unanimously said, yes, God is very evident here.

For this non-home repair Friday, we once again sent a crew to UGWA to continue to help with the stream clean-up.  It is a rather hot and humid day, so the volunteers were only able to stay outside for a short time.  We also continued with the Home Repair classes at St. Vincent DePaul with this week's classes focusing on changing out faucets and drains in your sink.

Basketball camp concluded with the awards ceremony, with trophies, basketballs and t-shirts for all the campers.  A BIG thank you to Coach "D" for spending another week with us and offering the kids of Wyoming County another wonderful week of basketball camp.

Afternoon activities included tutoring and Glen Rogers Manor.  Tutoring continues to go very well.  The combination of the enthusiastic volunteers and the attentive kids has been marvelous.  Glen Rogers manor also continues to go wonderfully.  We are getting a record number of PVs going and also record numbers of participation of the residents.  All in all, today was a wonderful day.

Tonight's dinner is a yummy combination of.....fajitas, potatoes and cornbread.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Thursday, July 22, 2010

"Good actions give strength to ourselves and inspire good actions in others."  Plato

Since games have played a central role in this week's community, for reflection we were given a playing card and a scrabble piece and asked to share about the day using the number on the playing card and the letter on the scrabble piece.  A very creative reflection!

A lot of progress was made today at the sites.  In Hanover we 85% of the flooring in now laid!  It is really coming together and looking nice.  The first coat of paint is almost done at the house in Jesse, despite the continuing downpours.  We also started a new roofing site in Glen Rogers for our storyteller friend.  About half of the roof is complete.

Basketball Camp continues to be a wonderful experience for everyone.  The kids are gaining tremendous knowledge each and every day.  Tomorrow will be a sad day when it comes to a end.

For dinner tonight, we will be treated to "poor man's stew."  A wonderful, hearty concoction of veggies and meat over rice and/or mashed potatoes.  For desert we are being treated to homemade ice cream.  Yummy.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

"People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost."  Dalai Lama

For reflection last night we reflected on being afraid and then shared a "new and good" from the day.  After reflection the whole group hung out at the tables and played games, a sort of informal tradition that has taken hold this week.

We hit a milestone up in Hanover today with finishing all the painting.  A lot of PVs have put a lot of time and in effort in first creating those walls and now there is a finished product.

The painting crew up the road in Jesse, was finally able to get some paint onto the house once if finally stopped raining mid-morning. The house looks great, like a brand new house.

Another crew headed out towards Welch to do some finishing work on roof that was put on a few years ago and has just begun to leak in a few places.  They got it sealed up in no time.

The two non-home repair sites for the day were Basketball Camp and tutoring.  Basketball Camp continues to go very well, picking up a few kids each day.  The kids are learning some wonderful skills from Coach "D" and his merry band of PVs.  After the morning camp session, some PVs headed back to the school for tutoring. We are very happy how dedicated our four kids have been all summer. They are there each and every day and we have really seen a marked improvement in their abilities.

Dinner tonight is breakfast casserole (again, from the PV Cookbook), fruit and blueberry muffins.  Yummy, yummy!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

"The kingdom within is lush garden that fills your soul with awe. An inner landscape of truth, beauty and love that if acknowledged and appreciated will transport you to a higher level of being where the glow of greatness will guide you to the essence of true wisdom."  Michael Teal

Last night we were asked to reflect on what we each bring to West Virginia, the PV Community and/or the community at large.  It was a nice twist on the idea of we want to bring from our experience.

For sites today we spent time up in Hanover continuing with painting, flooring and connecting the water pipes.  The crew at the painting site in Jesse were able to get some of the painting done, but were once again stalled by torrential downpours. We were also able to finish up the roofing site in Mullens.  The last of the crew went to Basketball Camp and again it was a huge success.  The kids and the volunteers had a lot of fun.

Tonight is taco night!!! Yum yum!

Monday, July 19, 2010

"The mind has exactly the same power as the hands; not merely to grasp the world, but to change it."  Colin Wilson

The first day of a new week always feels like a fresh start and a new beginning.  This is especially true this week with 24 people leaving and 18 people arriving on Saturday.  As the PV Goal statement said, in all endings are seeds of new beginnings....

Today's sites were pretty much spread across the county.  We continued work up in Hanover on the flood site.  For those of you that have worked up there this summer, you may be happy (or jealous) to know that it is now air conditioned.  The heat/air pump was installed over the weekend.

We also continued on the roof in Mullens and the paint site in Jesse.  Unfortunately since it was so wet yesterday morning, all the painting that was able to be done was the indoor painting, but we look forward to sending a large crew up there tomorrow to continue the painting from Thursday.

The final two sites were the Itmann Food Bank, arranging and organizing after last week's distribution day, and Basketball Camp in Pineville.  At the camp we were happy to see a lot of familiar faces of kids who have grown up going to the camp and have now turned into pretty good basketball players. It looks like it is going to be a good week ahead.

Dinner tonight is bake ziti (from the recipe in the PV Cookbook), salad and garlic bread.  A simple, yet satisfying meal.  Yummy!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Another wonderful PV Community Day!  We were able to spend the day getting to know each other by interviewing each other and playing a fun game of kickball.  After orientation for the new folks and reorientation for the returners, we enjoyed another wonderful cookout.

The evening was wrapped up with the PV Commissioning Service, anointing all the newly arrived, for the service that they will perform.  Job sites were assigned and then folks were able to fellowship with each other and go off to bed for a good night's sleep.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Friday, July 16, 2010

Friday, July 16, 2010

"We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and to know the place for the first time."  T.S. Eliot

It is hard to believe that another week is coming to a close.  Time just seems to be flying by these days.

Last night we had a wonderful reflection on the youth in the county, done by some of the youth in the PV Community.  It was a wonderful and thought provoking sharing.

Today, as always was our non-home repair day.  We aren't out on home repair sites, but it is quite a busy day.  After the morning scrubbing of the school, volunteers set off to Mullens to help with distribution day at the Itmann Food Bank and to once again work with UGWA doing both clean up and water monitoring.

We also continued with our series of home repair classes at St. Vincent DePaul.  This week the participants were taught the tricks of installing and hanging doors and doorknobs.

We also had our last day at soccer camp in Glen Fork.  I think a good time was had by all, campers and PVs alike.  Several of the campers then returned back to the school in the afternoon for a two hour tutoring session proudly wearing their new camp shirts.

Later in the afternoon, quite a few volunteers headed to Glen Rogers Manor for several fun games of Banana Bingo with the residents.  All in all a great day.

Tonight for dinner we are having quesadillas.  As the t-shirts in Dairy Queen say, scrump-dilly-icious!

Don't forget to check back tomorrow for pictures from the week!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

"Each person has an opportunity to help others no matter how little; this help is really more about making a difference that can assist others to improve their own life."  Byron Pulsifer

For reflection we were asked to reflect on a difference that we might have made, a change that has occurred in us and what we can do to help continue the PV Program. Lots to make us think and reflect.

Worked continued today in Hanover, Jesse, Mullens and Glen Fork and the soccer camp continued into its fourth day.  It ended up being another hot day with temperatures reaching into the 90's.  Despite the heat, everybody had a great day and a lot of work was done.

Dinner tonight was a yummy feast of ham, beans, twice baked potatoes and green beans.  Yum yum.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

"We should all be thankful for those people who rekindle the inner spirit."  Albert Schweitzer

Reflection last night was a chance to reflect on those people we have met in WV, or as a PV, who have left a hand print on our heart.  It was a beautiful and emotional sharing.

Sites today continued to roll along.  We sent two crews up to Hanover to continue working at the the two houses.  We are down to painting, moulding and floor covering.  It is getting close!

Crews also continued on the porch up the road and the roof in Mullens.  We were also able to send a small group to help at the Itmann Food Bank, getting ready for distribution on Friday.  And lastly, we had another successful day at Glen Fork Soccer Camp with tutoring in the afternoon.

Dinner was, yet again, another scrumptious feast.  We had casserole, mashed potatoes, broccoli salad and banana pudding for dessert.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

"Wisdom is the reward you get for a lifetime of listening when you'd have preferred to talk."  Doug Larson

To kick off a new week, last night for reflection we did the traditional "New and Good" sharing.  We were also challenged to each day think of a new and good as a way to focus our thoughts.

Today we were challenged with rain on and off during the day.  Some parts of the county had heavy downpours while the others stayed for the most part dry.  Work began on a new roof in Mullens, a porch in Glen Fork and a house painting project in Jesse and we also continued work on the two flood sites in Hanover. The second day of soccer camp moved outside, however we were rained on for more than hour.  At least soccer in the rain in kind of fun!

Looking forward to dinner tonight; Meatloaf, 3 Bean Salad, potatoes and soda bread.  Yummy, yummy!

Monday, July 12, 2010

"There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered."  Nelson Mandela

We were awoken in the morning to a tremendous storm...heavy rains and thunder.  Ironically it was the first day that we haven't had all indoor sites all summer.  After a little adjusting of people and sites we were ready for the day.  We ended up having to cancel a porch and a roof site, but plan on starting those on Tuesday now.  We sent people back to the two flood sites to continue work.  From all accounts, I haven't been up there in awhile,  it is looking amazing.  We also sent a small crew back to Lilydale to finish up with the steps from last week.  The other site for the day was Glen Fork Soccer Camp.  Because we had so many cancellations at other sites, there ended up being about 15 volunteers at camp.  It was great to have all the extra bodies to interact with the kids and have a lot of fun. Even though we had to run the camp in the gym because of the weather, the kids all seems to enjoy themselves.

When people came back to the school after the sites, the electricity went out for a few seconds, but when it came back on, only half the school had power.  Luckily since it was dinner prep time, for the most part the kitchen power was on.  We were treated to a yummy dinner of veggie chili, rice and cornbread.  And then, during reflection we lost all the power again, only this time for close to two hours, hence the late blog post.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Another wonderful PV Community Day....after attending Mass in Pineville, volunteers grabbed a quick lunch and then met in the gym for some community bonding time.  With a group as large as we have, 42, we knew it would be important to learn everyone's name so we did a few name games and then wrapped up with a game of whiffleball.  After that, some folks watched the world cup final between the Netherlands and Spain others headed up to Twin Falls for some hiking.

Before dinner we gathered everyone who came in yesterday for a reorientation and review of what to expect.  Dinner was what has become our tradition Sunday meal, hamburgers/veggie burgers, beans, slaw and this time a special treat of potato salad made with potatoes from Raymond's garden.  Talk about fresh, the potatoes when from the dirt to the oven in less than two hours. Yum, yum.

The day closed with the traditional PV Commissioning Service and selection of job sites for tomorrow.  We are looking forward to a great week.