Northwest Portland Hostel

Centrally Located – in the Heart of Portland

Volunteer Orientation

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Last Tuesday, we invited all of our wonderful volunteers for a Volunteer Orientation followed by a dinner in our ‘Willi Unsoeld Group Lodging Center’. We started with a fun icebreaker game called Snowball, where everybody writes on a piece of paper what the others don’t know about the person and then throws it at the others like a snowball. We found out that one of us hugged Tom Cruise and that the owner of our great hostel was once the stage manager of a Broadway musical touring Europe.

The actual orientation was led by Tessah Joseph, the activities coordinator. She provided information about the mission and goals of the Northwest Portland Hostel Activities Program, reviewed current activities, and gave a preview of summer activities. Jim, one of the owners of our hostel, gave an update about the latest changes and news from Hostelling International. We finished with a feedback session and an activity brainstorm. “It was great getting the staff and volunteers together to brainstorm ideas for new activities and discuss any improvements that can be made to the program. Since I am not out with the guests , I don’t hear the same feedback about the events as the volunteers, which is why getting together as a group is so beneficial”, said Tessah.

The orientation was followed by a make your own burrito dinner withfresh made lime and strawberry Margaritas, and all you can eat icecream as dessert. It was so delicious! It was great to spend time with our volunteers, chat and have some drinks. We had a great time!

Inspired by the feedback session and new ideas for new activities such as a Photography Walk/Tour’ or ‘Staircases of Portland’, we are looking forward to a great summer with our awesome volunteers! Our volunteer community is growing and growing, thereby we would like to say thanks again for offering a fun time for hostelers, creating opportunities for socializing with other travelers, and provide a local perspective for hostelers. Thanks for all the important work you do!

Interested in volunteering? Check out or volunteer openings on this website or contact us under

Stay tuned for more photos on facebook and flickr.

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