Interview by: Jonah Fox
October 1, 2017
Kira Findling is an Oberlin College Student. She volunteers with Big Brothers and Big Sisters of Lorain County. Every week she meets up with a fifth grader from Prospect elementary to play battleship, talk about her week, and eat snacks.
Q: Can you tell me what it’s like to be with that fifth grader?
A: I always miss being around kids when I’m here, so it’s nice to be with someone who’s out of the bubble a little bit.
"I think that going to a school is a good way to understand a community..."
Q: You think that this has given you a way in to the community?
A: I think that going to a school is a good way to understand a community, just sort of being in that environment has been really neat.
Q: Does it feel like you’re giving back in a way?
A: I think it does because I come from somewhere else and have different experiences from her particularly. I can offer her something different than people who’ve grown up here so in that way I feel like I’m giving something of myself to her and she’s giving me something of herself.
Q: Do you think you’ve found any community through your volunteer work?
A: It makes me feel like more of a resident of Oberlin and less of a visitor because she and I expect something of each other and I have a relationship and a commitment that’s outside of my college commitments, so I feel like I’m building community with her. I’d definitely like to do more, but I’m happy with the community she and I have built.
Q: How do you see other students relating to volunteering?
A: Most people I talk to see it as very important, and something we owe to this community because we are visitors and we’re also residents, so we all need to pitch in and be part of it. Something I really liked about oberlin that drove me here was how many people do community service and I think there’s always more opportunities but I’ve been really impressed with how much people care.