I feel that living in the Moishe House Orange County has really helped me to honed in on my skills of welcoming new people to the house and to the community. A friend of mine named Brian from college went to the Moishe House in Boston for the first time a few months ago, and he told me how residents and non-residents were very welcoming to him. Things Brian noticed were that they rememebered his name and introduced him to a person who was in the same line of work as him. These are things I've tried to do at our events lately, especially bigger events where newcomers may feel intimidated. I try to spend the majority of my time at larger events with the new people.
Recently, we hosted a Chanukah party with over 80 people, and 30 newcomers. About 2 hours into the event, I was talking to a group of 4 new people. They had asked me about the house and what we do here and were very excited to be a part of the event. After we had talked in our common area for a few minutes, I invited them into my bedroom where it was a bit quieter. We talked for about 20 minutes and listened to some quiet music. They all stayed until the end of the event and I got friend requests from all of them on facebook afterwards. I am not able to spend a good chunk of time with every new person at every event, but when I spend that time with some of the people, I know that it makes a big difference.