Tuesday, May 22, 2007

A change in my direction

I won't be volunteering at the food bank anymore.

I'll be working there for wages. The volunteer coordinator gave her notice shortly before the director would be going on parental leave, and between them they decided that the director would ask me to take over the job for a few months to get the food bank through a couple of big transitions. The director knew that he would not have time to do a full candidate search and train someone before the VC planned to leave when he knew he would be out for a couple weeks with the new baby.

I knew this was coming. For one thing, the VC had told me that she was planning to leave when she finished her degree, and that when she had had to suddenly go home for a few weeks in March she told the director at that time that he could and should rely on me. In one of our conversations, I remarked, lightly, that I would "do her job" when she left. I didn't know the timing was going to practically coincide with the parental leave, but it has. When the director came to me a couple weeks ago and asked if I would be willing to take on additional responsibility and "be a key holder" I let him talk himself out, to see what he was thinking, even though I knew I would say yes.

So, this volunteering thing has led where I wanted it to: a "real" job at the food bank. It is just through August and anything could happen then, like I could not want to do it anymore, or the board of directors could decide they want to do a full candidate search (for whatever reasons) and not hire me. That's okay because that's the position I would be in anyway.

I'm feeling sad about losing all of the time I have now to do whatever I want whenever I want (I guess I'll be at the gym much earlier in the morning, for example). But that's another position I would be in eventually anyway, unless Zirpu wins the lottery. I'm going from working 16-20 hours a week to full time, though the hours aren't all 9 to 5. I'll be working two Saturdays a month, but I'll have the preceding Thursdays off in trade, and the Saturdays are half-days.

There are exciting things happening at the food bank this summer: We're getting a new building and will temporarily be in a couple of different locations while they take away the old double-wide trailer and bring us a triple. We will also be going electronic, which just in itself will probably result in some volunteer turnover. I'll get to be part of all of that!

I'm not that concerned about transitioning from volunteer to employee. I'm already kind of bossy so I don't think most people will find it odd to be suddenly taking my "suggestions." A lot of the volunteers seem to be pretty committed to the mission and are, for the most part, really easygoing. No one is there because they need the paycheck or the retirement plan, like people I knew at the state university.

I start tomorrow.

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