Now that I am completing my 2nd month as a VISTA it is interesting to reflect back on my time thus far. Some of my successes are purely logistical. I finally have my own work space, telephone, etc…YAY! I also organized and carried out my first meeting with a community organization that I wasn’t just sitting in on like many other meetings! Other successes are actually related to my overall goals of my VAD. We have the first meeting with a Coordinated School Health Team (CSHT) scheduled (I am working with 6 schools and each school is forming a CSHT that we will meet with throughout the year) and each school will be starting the School Health Index ASAP. I have also been working to find as many resources as possible that fall under the 8 modules of Coordinated School Health (CSH) so that when the schools begin to create goals for the school year, they will have direct access to community organizations and contacts that will help fulfill these goals.
Some challenges do exist too, and I don’t see them disappearing any time soon. Things are still slow. My work is based on the work of the schools. Since the schools are taking a while to create teams and I have nothing to meet with them about until this happens I continue to remind them and do research. So I try to focus on what I have control over, which have is continuing to find and compile as many resources as possible. Also some of the schools are not very excited about/interested in implementing this initiative, which is a challenge in itself. Other challenges are things that go on here that I have no control over but have to hear/watch/experience. This may be discussed more at the monthly meeting… Finally, my supervisor is still extremely busy which makes it difficult to communicate with him at times. I am looking forward to a few exciting changes/additions to my VAD, but because of my supervisor’s limited availability, it is difficult to discuss this in enough detail in order to bring it forward to RYY, which is also something I will most likely be discussing further in the near future.
Overall, things are going well. My project is a great initiative for the district and I am excited to be involved with it and to become more involved with it as time goes on and the schools are more on board. In the mean time I try to do as much as possible so that when things do pick up and the schools are on board I will have everything ready for them and it will be smooth sailing…I hope.
Oh and the challenge of living on the VISTA stipend…it has been a challenge and will continue to be a challenge (as I am sure it is for all of use) but I am learning from it as best I can and continue to tell myself I can only go move up from here!!!