Page:Homes of the London Poor.djvu/68

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66
HOMES OF THE LONDON POOR.

the longer I work there," one lady said to the referee, not long ago; "the more I learn, the more the work increases. I see numberless helpful things I could do if only I had time. May I divide my district? I don't know which part of it I can make up my mind to give up; there are people I should grieve to lose sight of in every part of it, yet I cannot manage all that I now see ought to be done." "Do not divide your district," the referee replied; "the Committees, Guardians, School Board, and I myself cannot easily treat with still smaller divisions than that into separate courts or streets. Let me introduce you to one of the younger volunteers whom you may associate with you in the work. She is too young to visit alone, or to judge what is wise in difficult cases, but she will write your monthly reports, will be a friendly messenger to pay pensions, will call to ask if children are at school, and report to the School Board, will collect savings and keep accounts of them, will write about admissions to Convalescent Homes or Industrial Schools, will give notice of classes and entertainments, and register the window plants before our flower shows. In short, she will form a friendly link between you and the people, will save your time, and be herself trained to take the lead hereafter. Mr. R., too, offered help in the evening, if you want him to establish that Co-operative Store, to keep some life in the Working Men's Club, or to collect savings in the court on a Saturday night; and Mrs. S. offers help in money for special cases of want which the committee can hardly take up, or for some of our excursions to the country this summer. In fact, it you will associate other workers with you, instead of still further subdividing the district, it will be much the best."

And so the work grows, and the various help gets more and more woven into one whole.

Much has been written of late on the subject of Sisterhoods and of "Homes," where those who wish to devote themselves to the service of the poor can live together,