Monday, January 28, 2013

Guest Blogger Girl Scout Rachael Friedenberg: My Experience Volunteering at the Inauguration

More than 700 Girl Scouts and Girl Scout volunteers helped facilitate the crowds at the 57th Presidential Inauguration in D.C. recently. Girl Scout Rachael Friedenberg from Shenandoah County, Virginia, was one of the volunteers.
On Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday, I had the privilege of attending Barack Obama’s second inauguration. This was an opportunity of a lifetime.  I am very thankful that I had this very amazing opportunity, especially coming from a small town in Shenandoah County, Virginia. My assigned job was ADA Directional in the White House Zone. I was supposed to help disabled people who had limited mobility, were in a wheelchair, or needed ASL interpretation to their seats. There were very few people who needed assistance. So, I also helped direct other people to their seats. Helping people makes me happy and I liked when people smiled at me after I directed them. Without our help these people would probably be very lost. I can just imagine a bunch of people walking around trying to find their seats.
 After we had finished our job and they closed off the roads for the parade, we went into the bleachers in hopes of getting a glimpse of the President. It turned out that we had a great view. When the President and First Lady walked by unexpectedly, I stood up and waved. I got a picture so I could have the memory forever.
I think my favorite part of the night was being thanked, even after we had left the vicinity. When we were walking toward the metro station, still in our volunteer smocks, many people shouted, “Thank you!” to us. One young girl who turned out to be a Girl Scout herself came up to us with such excitement and asked how she could help in the future. When we got off the metro station, far away from the parade, a lady asked if we had fun and thanked us. It was nice to know that our help was appreciated.