Simple acts of kindness make all the difference at Sally’s House


Faraz Virani

[dropcap]A[/dropcap]s part of the Upper School’s Community Service program, students visit Sally’s House, a safe haven for single women that went through a substance abuse detoxification program. Sponsored by the Salvation Army, the shelter located in downtown Houston cares for women for as long as a year, and residents can participate in a multitude of programs and support services available to them.

This year, Rebecca Noel (12), a four year member of the Community Service Council, was the project leader for the Sally’s House event, taking twelve students to serve twenty women at Sally’s House and participate in activities with the women there. This is Noel’s second year on the project, and she appreciates that just a small act of kindness can put such a big smile on the residents’ faces.

“Sally’s House is an easy and fun project because it allows volunteers to really talk with the women at the shelter and form personal connections with them. They all are so kind and have such amazing stories, so it is really rewarding to serve them and hopefully make their day a little better,” Noel said.

Earlier this month, members of the Community Service Council brought fall-themed decorations for the women to adorn and personalize their doors at the residence. Noel remembers a resident in particular who took the task to heart and really made her decorations special.

“One woman made a really detailed, beautiful banner on which she wrote all of her kids names, and she had the biggest smile on her face as she told me about all of them. She was really glad to be able to have something to remind her of them while she was staying at the shelter. She kept thanking us for coming, but I think we all were equally as glad to have been a part of it,” Noel recollected.

Simple activities such as painting the ladies’ nails or a twenty minute conversation with them can make a resident’s day, who don’t have many people visiting them at all. They light up when the Upper School volunteers come. What appear at face value to be the smallest deeds are cherished by the women overcoming and fighting their own, personal battles and demons. The the Sally’s House event offers unique perspective and a positive experience for everyone involved.