Just be kind.
Last night I received an email from a fellow volunteer. She shared that she would probably not be helping much longer because of some Facebook bashing directed at her. This was very sad to me and I know she is not the only who has had this experience or another type of negative volunteer experience. Here was my response to her. I would like to share it because it is my response to anyone else who has experienced something similar.
...First off let me say I am so sorry that happened to you on Facebook. People can be ruthless and have NO regard for others feelings especially on social media. It stuns me. Unfortunately, you are not the first person who has had an unpleasant experience discourage them from continuing to help. I myself almost walked away from helping completely after the second time I came up over a month ago. I had made a 5 hour round trip (you can relate) to drop off brand new camping supplies. Nothing terrible happened but it was not a great experience and I left feeling upset. This truly was almost the end of my experience in Mountain Ranch and yet I continued to see the need on FB. Then I realized how unfair it was of me to stop helping those that needed it because I did not get the personal satisfaction I was looking for from the experience. I am NOT implying this is your case. I am talking about what I found for myself. Another hurdle was seeing that maybe some of these people that were burned out aren't all that morally upright. This was also something I could not let stop me from helping those who were good people and have been burned out. I can tell you at this point I am so incredibly grateful I decided to continue to help. This has been the most rewarding thing I have done so far (minus having my children). I have met some incredible people both volunteers and victims. And yes, I have also met the other extreme and I will keep helping anyway...
So let us remember the people helping are often caring and sensitive individuals and words can and do hurt.