Students Reflect on their Volunteer Experience at Silverado
"Over the past few days working at Silverado, a home for elderly people suffering from different stages of dementia, I have learned many things that have opened my eyes to an unfamiliar aspect of the world around me. These people have touched my heart in numerous ways over this short period of time. Although some of the residents may have difficulties communicating, some of the coherent stories and memories they've shared to me have been truly inspiring. Hearing about the way of life they experienced during their childhood and coming of age has definitely given me a better understanding and appreciation of their generation. Our small group of ten students have made many friends who we love talking to and hanging out with, despite our obvious age differences. Seeing these people in their last stages of life has given me a different perspective in how I lead my own. I hope that when I am at the age when it seems like my whole life is in the past, I will feel happy and accomplished like so many of the residents at Silverado have shared with me. I hope to have stories to share with younger generations that will give as much inspiration to them as all the people I have talked to have given me. It feels very fulfilling to serve and aid them, whether that be through helping in the kitchen or talking to them about their day. It's crazy to think that right across the street from our school is a whole other community filled with people living in a totally different world. I am truly blessed to have experienced this week of selflessly serving others. The saying "give joy, get joy" has never been more apparent than times like these when I am volunteering my time to people in need. Helping the residents and staff has given me an immeasurable amount of joy that I'm sure has been reciprocated to everyone that was affected by our work at Silverado. "
- Hannah Galatoire
The overall experience at Silverado was truly a life changing one. Even though Silverado isn't as much heavy labor work as it is with other local groups, it is more about serving others. What we did was being there for these amazing folks who live there, and just seeing their smiles and hearing them laugh and making us laugh it truly is amazing. There definitely was some labor, but it wasn't crazy hard labor, what most of us did was being there for them, helping in anyway possible, and talking to the residents even though they might not remember us the next day; just seeing them happy at the moment and having the time of their lives is what is the most important factor. I know this has been the most life changing eagle week trip I have done. It is amazing how attached you can get to someone you just met, I don't even want to leave at the end of the day because I have such a great time with them and feel so connected to them all. I will come visit them every now and then considering it is right across the street from FBCA and because they are my friends now. It seriously is such an emotional and amazing missionary group and makes you appreciate the individuals you have in life and how precious every moment is. It also makes you realize you need to live to the moment, meaning you enjoy what you have in front of you because you never know when you might lose it. I say everything in all honestly but this is the first eagle trip I truly enjoy and look forward too and knowing I can continue serving them whenever I like and actually enjoying what I am doing is a blessing. I am truly thankful for this amazing opportunity.
- Armin Garcia
One of the craziest things that my time at Silverado is making me understand is the fact that a whole different world is right under our noses as students at FBCA. As students we are aspiring to be doctors, nurses, soldiers, and engineers, but these people have already experienced it. As seen in the wrinkles of their faces, they were once high school students who had plans just like we do now. But as we sit around in our daily studies, we sometimes get tunnel vision and we don't realize that the things we are reading about in our history books is the reality of their youth. My teacher Dr. Bartel from HBU told me that "one of the hardest things you can do is to bring about the realization of your mortality." As I sit in the lobby of this place, I have come to realize that one day the history books will be written about this present era which is a vault for our youth.
- Brooks Bradshaw
My time at Silverado has been such a blessing. The people here always have a smile on their face and are so kind to each of us. God has really shown me how to care for others and be patient. I am very thankful for this experience and the people I have met. Whether we are dancing and singing or just sitting and talking, it's been such a fun experience.
- Sydney Dawson