|Some more time|
|By Our Readers|
Editor’s Note: This week we continue to discover what practitioners do outside of work.
David Worthington, Operations Analyst II, Florida
I collect die cast cars. I am really into NASCAR and the old muscle cars of the ‘60s. My collection consists of over 100 cars.
I think I have every muscle car from 1953 to 1973. I really enjoy going to the stores on the weekends and looking for cars I need to fill my collection.
Sr. Chaplain F. Liburd, Lowell Correctional, Florida
I have been working for the Department of Corrections since February 2000, and I love my job. I have always found fulfillment in helping others.
On my days off, I teach part-time at Central Florida Community College. I am a Master’s level teacher, and regularly teach English prep classes for those who need to improve their skills.
I sometimes teach career skills classes for new students entering college and classroom management for public school teachers.
In addition to my other duties, I have become an avid writer. I have several manuscripts ready to be published. I will be publishing children’s books and Christian inspirational books.
Overall, I enjoy having a balanced life. I find joy both in offering spiritual guidance to those at DOC and in teaching at the college. I hope to continue working at both places for many years to come.
Don Hicks, Sr. Classification Officer, RMC Work Camp, Florida
Are you feeling stressed? Job leaving you with that burnt out feeling? Need some way to relieve stress? Let me tell you about my hobby- “The birds and the bees.”
Falconry is the sport of kings. Many people do not know that in today’s world there are still people who practice the ancient art of falconry, but it is legal in all parts of the United States.
You do need a state and federal license to practice falconry, but that can be obtained through your state game and fish department. They will also help you obtain the federal license.
To practice falconry you need to locate a licensed master level falconer in your area. You will also need to be willing to invest one hour per day, seven days per week.
If you have ever seen a wild hawk in hunt mode it is something you will never forget. A falconer sees that every day. As a falconer, you will spend hours hunting with your bird and you will develop an intimate bond with it.
Once you have a bird that responds to your commands the satisfaction you will feels is immense. Now that I have told you about the birds let me tell you my other hobby-“the Bees.”
As a hobby beekeeping has also been practiced for millenniums. The reward is also sweet and tasty as well as helpful to your garden and the local farmers.
Ask your state agricultural department for leads about beekeepers in you area and you will find them most helpful. Also beekeepers are willing to share their knowledge and skill with young and old as you learn. There are many Apiary clubs scattered across the United States that will help you learn and grow in this exciting field.
So, remember if you want to relieve stress after a long day at work don’t come home and kick the dog or scream at the kids. Just practice the “birds and the bees” and you will find that stress just melts away.
Teresa N. Williams, Records Supervisor, Robert Scott Correctional, Michigan
I work for an independent market research company. Market research companies pay consumers for their opinion as it relates to goods or services. I have been a professional researcher for the past 8 years or so.
Presently I work for a company called Opinion Search, in Southfield, Michigan. They gathering information on client products or services from consumers. These requests can cover automotive supplies, car performance, containers, plastic bottles, medicine, and more. Clients may need information that would be helpful and useful in running their businesses.
Researchers like me are provided with samples that have the respondent’s name, date of birth, address and other information what would be useful to the client to solicit respondents opinions about goods, or services. Researchers ask for opinions by phone, mass mail or post cards, letter, or e-mails.
When researchers call, they ask a series of questions to determine if consumers’ needs or wants satisfy the desire of the client.
I have worked at the Grand Prix, and have done automotive studies for new cars. I have been video taped for companies, worked as a hostess for a mock juries, done phone work in the research office, worked as a supervisor on many projects, participated in focus groups, helped with movie reviews, worked for the Detroit Visitor Bureau and have participated in many events that have been interesting and I have met some great people .
This is a part-time job for anyone who likes versatility and who likes working with people. It has its ups and downs like any other job but it can be quite satisfying. I like seeing people happy when they receive a cash incentive after they participated in a research project.
This part-time job has trained me to be more service oriented and accommodating to all. Applying the art of listening more helps me in my regular job to get to the message of the request quicker and to respond appropriately while meeting the needs of our consumers the public.
Su Tarr, Probation/Parole Officer, Virginia
I have been in this job since 1992. I enjoy my work and believe in my job and its significance in the spectrum of law enforcement/corrections work.
My other "life" involves my real passion: music. I have been playing the violin for 42 years and originally moved to Virginia from my home state of Ohio in 1981 to perform with the Richmond Symphony Orchestra, which continued for 7 years. As most musicians can tell you, making a living playing music is a difficult and challenging way to live.
Over the years, my career path led me to my current job, but my love of music and performing has stayed with me. I now perform with two bands and am a contract employee with Colonial Williamsburg, performing as a Balladeer while patrons are enjoying meals/drinks in the taverns and for conferences and other special events.
I was very fortunate to be one of the entertainers able to play at the party hosted by Colonial Williamsburg for the Queen of England during the 400th Anniversary celebrations in Virginia in 2007.
The photo is of me, performing with one of my bands at a local church benefit in Richmond, at the St. Patrick's Church Irish Festival. My other band performs historical music from the Civil War period, and we perform in costume. You can check out more at my website, www.southern-horizon.com
Kathy Ferguson, Correctional Probation Senior Officer, Florida.
I am the founder and president of Pavilion of Hope for Women, Inc., a non-profit whose mission is to inspire hope to women who are homeless and disadvantaged.
We provide a safe and comfortable home in the Seminole County, Altamonte Springs area. We provide food, personal grooming products and life skills training that encourage a return to a state of self-sufficiency.
Our goal is to return these women into society as productive, independent and restored people. We assist our residents in obtaining employment and offer a savings plan so they can provide for themselves upon leaving the program.
These adult females have been referred by resource hotlines, domestic abuse shelters, social services and correctional institutions. Working with the homeless has been a challenging experience, but it has also been a ministry that has been a rewarding one.
Gary Brown, Electronics Vocational Instructor, Washington CI, Florida
Brown is president of the Chipola Amateur Radio Club in Marianna, FL. The Chipola ARC is a not-for-profit promoting HAM radio as a hobby and as a means of emergency communication in times of disaster.
The club meets regularly at the emergency operations center in Jackson County and also sponsors and attends several community events around the panhandle. For more information visit the club’s web site at www.chipolaarc.org.
Jennifer Peter, Department of Correctons, Alaska
Hello, all from the northern most part of the United States of America. That is right, Alaska. I have been working for the DOC as an officer for the last seven and half years.
Over the last few years, I worked on obtaining my Bachelor’s degree in Humanities and Social Sciences. I finally graduated this past May.
Since then, I have taken on a new challenge for the summer season. I set a goal of riding my bicycle 3,000 miles.
I ride everywhere. I ride to do errands. I ride for the pleasure of being outside. I also ride to and from work every day, which is roughly 20 miles, and then on my off days I try to get in at least 35-45 miles a day.
I do not let the weather stop me because if I did I would never reach my goal. Speaking of, I should reach it by October 1, 2008.
This picture was taken this year at the Alaska American Lung Association Clean Air Challenge May 10-11, 2008. It is a wonderful fundraiser, and it is the first major ride for most Alaskans. We ride 60 miles each day. The view is nothing less than spectacular!
There are many other things I do on my down time such as hiking, fishing, and hunting. However, I have to say that biking is my passion. It keeps me in shape, and better prepared for anything that comes my way on or off the job.
Arthur John Greer, Western Youth Institution, North Carolina
My time off from work is the joy of my life and makes the stress of working in a prison setting easier to survive. My wife, Rose, and I sing and play bluegrass gospel music. It is on Sunday mornings before we attend the worship service at our church and on Monday nights that we get our greatest enjoyment.
At these times, we join a group of volunteers from at least three different churches to play at rest homes in our area. We get together for the sole reason of being a blessing to people who are in need of a diversion from the mundane life of a rest home. Any diversion is a special occasion to these people.
They always tell us how they appreciate that we give them of our time. They brag on our singing and playing, even when we know we made a mistake. They know the value of our time to us and let us know they value it also.
My wife and I had one man who had retired from the railroad tell us he and his wife so appreciated that we young people had come by and broken up the monotony of the day. At that time I was probably 50 years old.
They especially love to have children come and sing or visit with them. We have a nine-year-old girl who sings with us occasionally. When she is not there, they always ask ‘where is the little girl. We love to have her sing”.
You will never understand the pleasure you receive until you take of your time and give to someone else. I hope that our story would encourage others to invest some time.
Johnny Pacheco, Safety Officer, Wyoming State
My son Mike Pacheco is an associate warden with the Wyoming Honor Conservation Camp. Together, we have just about 30 years with the Wyoming Dept of Corrections.
As anyone working in the corrections field knows this kind of work can be stressful most of the time. Being lucky enough to be born and raised in this beautiful state, we as a family have learned how to enjoy the different seasons of Wyoming.
Three months of summer and then winter. We have learned to adapt to this and enjoy both seasons, but of course winter is the best. Which we really enjoy as you can see in the picture. Snowmobiling in the Snowy Range area is what life is about to completely relax which we do as often as possible.
This picture was taken this year in the Lake Marie area, with me (Inset) and my Son Mike and my grandson Ricci Pacheco.
Avalyn Hunter, Florida
I’ve been a writer in the Thoroughbred industry since 2003. To date, I have three books to my credit (American Classic Pedigrees 1914-2002; The Kingmaker: How Northern Dancer Founded a Racing Dynasty; and Gold Rush: How Mr. Prospector Became Racing’s Billion-Dollar Sire), and have contributed chapters to four more books.
I’m also a regular columnist for The Blood-Horse’s website, (www.bloodhorse.com) and have written hundreds of articles on Thoroughbred pedigrees and racing history.
Micheline Lombardi, Probation and Parole Supervisor, Rhode Island Department of Corrections
Micheline has been writing a cooking column, Mangia with Micheline, for The Foster Home Journal, Scituate Star and Glocester Gazette since September 2006. These monthly publications are mailed to all homes in three Rhode Island towns.
Her articles include a story and a recipe that is related to the story line.
Micheline is also a member of the Rotary Club International, a service organization that provides scholarships, built and maintains a playground in town, provides funds to the local senior center, Boy and Girl Scouts, and other community organizations.
Internationally, the Rotary Clubs have clean water projects and polio eradication projects in underdeveloped countries.
Micheline, right, talks with a colleague.
Al Alba, Academic Teacher, Rhode Island Department of Corrections' Education Unit
Al served as volunteer traffic controller during the Narragansett Lions Club's annual Blessing of the Fleet Road Race in July. Proceeds from the race support charities throughout the state. Al served in a similar role for the Race for Grace, another fund raising run.
He helped prepare and serve a pasta dinner as a fundraiser and on the day of the race, served food at the station, ensuring that all of the runners had the opportunity to eat food donated by local businesses and establishments throughout Rhode Island.
Janice Lucas, Psychological Specialist, Lowell CI, Florida
I am a volunteer with Magnolia, a non-profit organization started by my sister, Eleanor Gilliam. The mission of the organization is to identify needs in the community and develop plans and find resources to meet those needs.
We are currently working on two major projects. The first is a monthly birthday club for adolescents and teens in foster care at Genesis House. We host a party each month for those celebrating birthdays during the month. All of the children at Genesis House attend. These parties help the kids feel celebrated at a time in their life when they may not have much to celebrate.
We also feel that it helps to increase self esteem, self worth, and a sense of community by recognizing and supporting others. One young adolescent boy recently told us, “I was having a bad day when I got up this morning but now I’m happy”.
We don’t take short cuts with our parties. There are gifts, games, prizes, decorations, and plenty of food. We depend on donations from community businesses, but mostly from our own personal funds.
In addition to the Birthday Club, we are working on a project to raise funds for Shands Hospital. They have a program that provides gas to families who have children receiving medical care at the hospital but have to continue to commute to work, etc. If you would like to volunteer, make suggestions, and/or a tax deductible donation please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
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