Thursday, September 20, 2012

Office Supplies

When my family came to visit, my mom brought with her a ton of office supplies to donate to my NGO. Things she brought included: pens, paper and binder clips, a stapler, scissors, a printer cable, and highlighters (among others). The ladies from my NGO were ecstatic! They took inventory of everything, sing-songing their names and trying a sampling of the new supplies out along the way. It was a supply-lover's dream.

Since then, every so often one of the ladies will call me over and ask what something is. Of particular note were the highlighters. One afternoon, I noticed the Center Coordinator laboriously underlining (with a ruler no less) a portion of a document that was needed to complete a report. I went and grabbed one of our new highlighters and brought it to her. She looked at me puzzled and asked what to do with it. She let out the biggest and loudest squeal I have ever heard when I started highlighting the paragraph she had previously been underlining. She then said she had never seen a highlighter before and was curious as to what it was when they were going though the supplies initially. She was beyond excited. I have since seen her using the highlighter in ways reminiscent of a high school AP History student - highlighting literally everything!

After realizing that the staff didn't know what all the supplies were, despite their not saying it, I have gone through every single item with them and shown them its use. They were flabbergasted and amazed that so many contraptions exist. Smiles literally beaming off of their faces.

Today we finalized a huge report we were submitting to a funder. We had stapled the different packets and I put an old paper clip I found on the desk on the entire bundle to hold it together. I left the packaged report and went to have a quick meeting before going to deliver it. When I returned, the ladies had replaced the paper clip with a binder clip and had used a variety of other supplies to really spruce it up. When I mentioned how great the report looked and how proud I was to go with them to submit it, they grinned and mentioned the new supplies and how they were able to use them. It was a simple moment but one that I was really happy to be a part of. 

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