People helping people.
That's what Haley House is all about. Fostering relationships. Connecting. Sharing. Backgrounds and hierarchy melt away. We are all one. Moving toward a common goal. Mutual respect for all.
Haley House Live-in Member
What is your role at Haley House?
My responsibilities include IT maintenance, a cooking class with the nearby McKinley school, our food pantry, and clothing room. I'm affectionately known to some as the Soup Kitchen Manager when working either the morning or afternoon meals. On rare occasion I earn the title IT Director, although I'm usually just the IT guy.
What brought you to Haley House?
I moved to Boston in the summer of 2011 without much of a plan except to take some classes part-time. One of my classmates had heard about the Haley House community and mentioned the idea of getting involved with it. Those of you already part of the community are aware of how its unique energy is palpable as soon as you enter the premises. Needless to say, I was immediately welcomed and enchanted by Haley House when I came to visit for the first time, and I haven't given a thought to leaving since then.
Favorite dish at HHBC, Soup Kitchen or Noonday Farm?
The Roxbury, of course.
Favorite downtime activity?
Bowling at King's or any alley that inadvertently has a 70s theme due to chronic decor negligence.
Favorite or most memorable HH moment?
Albert and I had spent our first few months at Haley House trying to organize our food pantry and make it a time for people to gather and enjoy each other's company. This task was nearly impossible due to a seemingly insurmountable language barrier; virtually all of our food pantry guests at the time spoke Cantonese, while Albert and I only had a "Google Translate" program to robotically spit out nonsense peppered with some Cantonese nouns and verbs.
Some time in around October of 2011, we discovered that one of our volunteers, Carrie, happens to speak both English and Mandarin (which is close enough to Cantonese that speakers can understand each other). She generously agreed to come to the food pantry and translate for us. My favorite memory of Haley House occurred when Carrie first addressed the food pantry guests: As she finished explaining in Cantonese how the food pantry operates, a brief silence indicated that all of the guests were stunned at her language skills -- and then a roaring round of applause with smiles all around quickly followed. It was a groundbreaking day, and now our food pantry runs as if there's no language barrier at all.