“I see people going to the movies, going out to eat in a restaurant, and hanging out in general and I see myself to the side. No one asks me to go out to eat and do things that they do. I have to work a bit harder just to get decent conversations. If I am lucky, people would maybe ask me to hang out. You see, to others, hanging out is commonplace, but to me, it’s a prize.”
Many have developed unwarranted fears by not having enough contact with people with disabilities. Hospitality is one of our foundational practices to remove these barriers. As my friend with an intellectual disability stated above, “.. to others, hanging out is commonplace.” And it is our “commonplace” privilege that we can share with those who will cherish neighborly entertainment as a prize.
OUR HOPE is to heal divisions between class and factions of our city and to create opportunity for people of diverse identities to meet, relate, and experience moments of life together that will be remembered. The invitation is for people who sense a call, whether from their faith or otherwise, to stand by, for, and with people who are given a low valued social status due to their disability.
We host experiences as dignifying as possible for our guests. There is typically an equal balance between servers and guests so that everyone feels valued and attended to. The environment is typical of many community gatherings and we strive to remove pretense and make real friends with people who are affected by disability. Our posture is humble and servers expect to be taught and receive the gift of good company.
Our guests will have valued contributions to make and may lead to adjusting the way that hospitality is practiced in order to create opportunity for guests to serve.
OUR VISION is a future where befriending our vulnerable neighbors becomes a regular way of life for us. A future where we both give and receive the gift of hospitality.
The friendships that blossom are not limited to the time and place of organized gatherings. We hope to bring people across class divisions to meet and then we encourage future gatherings to be hosted informally, even apart from Do For One itself. Do For One is here to assist as people make decisions to move in this direction.
Lastly, and most importantly, many, if not all our guests have need for personal advocates. This is the core encouragement of anyone who partners with our mission. It’s nearly impossible to meet more complex needs and interests unless done on a personal, one to one, or near one to one basis. Providing this kind of friendship will accomplish more than you may first realize.