We’re Trying Something New

We’re Trying Something New

March 18, 2016

Welcome to United Way's blog! Donors and volunteers are always so interested in what we are doing that we decided to launch our very own blog. We will use this outlet to share some of the experiences we are fortunate to encounter as staff at United Way. Also look out for posts from guest bloggers for a different perspective.

Today I would like to begin by formally introducing myself. While I am usually introduced as the Executive Director of United Way, I have many other important roles that matter to me: mother, grandmother, sister, aunt and friend. I'd like to share with you how I became interested in the importance of a strong community.

How we get to where we are in life is such a strange process. So many experiences and opportunities affect the choices we make in life. Sometimes, it is one of those big 'once in a lifetime' challenges or experiences that lead us in a certain direction. But for me, it was a series of small and seemingly insignificant events that led me to where I am.

One of these experiences occurred when I was a young child growing up in a small town in Niagara. I knew a man who experienced homelessness for many years. While most people in our town avoided him, my family embraced him. It was a long time before I understood why. Like my choices were affected by a series of events, his were too, but in a way no one would ever want to experience. He fought in the war, got a job, got married and had children. When his wife and child died, he turned to alcohol to numb the pain, which led to losing his job and home. Some people found it easy to judge him but my family remembered the person he was and never judged.

This experience, along with many others, guided me to where I am today. I believe I am one of the luckiest people in the world to be part of such an amazing group of people at United Way making a difference in our community.