Updated: Sep 14
There have been a number of times in the last 3 weeks that I have sent Junior Mentors to the Chicken and Bunny Barn with buddies for a couple of hours, with what I thought were clear instructions on how to clean the space. This included "Start with the room with nothing but bunnies. Make sure the floor is clear of all hay, including under the cages and that everything is organizes. When that is done, clean the hallway. Put all old hay in the compost and make sure you take all tools back to where you got them from. So imagine my dismay when I go down after a long day when I find this. (Please view slideshow)
Hopefully you can imagine that my feelings were actually hurt by this. The JM team I sent down there had hours and yes, a few campers to look after. But at any given time there were 2-4 JMs in this area. "Maybe, that really wasn't enough time" I thought, so the day after I decided to do an experiment. I went to monitor the barn with seven campers, as the loan Mentor I wanted to see if what I was asking was impossible. And I decided to challenge myself. I walked into the all bunny room, set my timer for 15 minutes and went to work. All while watching campers and helping them get bunnies, teaching them to hold chicks, etc... When my timer went off, this is what I was left with.
Let's take another look with a before and after side by side.
Can you tell the difference? Remember this took 15 minutes by myself while I helped 7 campers. What more could I have done with the area if I had 2 full hours and help?
With that experiment a success I decided after a water break to move on to the hallway. Now, the hallway is a big space and I knew that 15 minutes probably wouldn't cut it, so I set my timer for 30 minutes and got to work. Again, I still had 7 campers to watch, and was also answering farm phone calls at the time. Very distracted, this is what I managed to get done in 30 minutes.
Let's refresh our memories with a before and after
Can you see the difference? What more could I have done if I had 2 hours and help?
Moral of the story. Junior Mentors are here to learn, work and help. This is not a time to hang out with your friends, but to work as a team with them. If someone on your team isn't pulling their weight get a mentor to help out. Remember, your Junior Mentor nights, when you can hang with your friends, depends on me not doing this alone.