Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Transitions Reflection: Leif Drathman

I chose to serve at the Transitions home of Spokane for my weekly service and so far it has been a great experience. The Transitions home is definitely not a place for those looking for a calm and quiet environment. My visit this week was especially chaotic. I made my way down to the basement play area with Angelo and Sam to await the kids as one of the faculty member went and rounded them all up. From the moment they entered the door, the kids were running up to us, asking for piggy backs, throwing balls, and above all else screaming…what they were screaming was beyond me, but whatever came out of their mouths was louder than standing next to someone manning a chainsaw. After a few minutes we were fortunate to get them settled down to play basketball, foosball, and hide-and-go-seek.

Despite all the chaos, Transitions is definitely an eye opening experience. From the moment you meet the kids and see their parents, you know that the 2 hours we spend there a week really make a difference. The staff members always make comments about how eager the kids are to see us, and it shows in their enthusiasm. My personal guess is that many of the children get very little time to play with their parents and other kids in that sort of environment, either because the parents are busy or too worn out from the day by 5 o’clock. At times you see the sadder side of the kids’ situations and at times I forget that the kids are there because their parents are being rehabilitated back into the world from run-ins with the law. Hearing one of the kids say he wishes I was his Dad because of how much fun he was having really made me step back and think. While all I do is play silly games with the kids, its statements like that that make you look forward to going back and brighten the day of a kid growing up in a rough environment.

-Leif Drathman
Knight of Gonzaga

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