Last week, we REMEMBERED with a memorial event, Speak Their Name, to honor those who lost their lives to domestic or intimate partner violence in 2020 and 2021. Now, we invite you to learn how SERVICE – and our dedicated volunteers – is the heartbeat of the Center. Many of our volunteers have followed their passions to serve the Center and support survivors in their journey to a safer life.
After Jenny’s interest was piqued from a presentation by The Center for Women and Families’ volunteer manager during a college class, she began giving her time in the Center’s shelter, helping out with the kitchen team, children’s services, and residential clients. In 2013, Jenny moved into an internship volunteer role serving children at the Center, and the following year, she was hired for a full-time role as a call center and residential advocate. Jenny eventually advanced to call center supervisor in 2018, and though her career path led her away from the Center in the spring of 2020, she decided to stay connected by getting back to her volunteer roots. These days, she provides administrative support for the Center’s grants and development departments.
“My volunteer work at the Center not only allows me to play a role in carrying out their mission but also broadens my skill set and gives me the chance to serve alongside passionate people,” said Jenny. “I feel like I’m doing something valuable for the community.”
Through Jenny’s volunteer and paid work at the Center in multiple capacities and departments, she’s learned that each of the organization’s moving parts are integral in helping survivors become more successful. For all these parts to move as smoothly as possible, the Center needs support from the community, including people who volunteer, donate, and fundraise.
One of the most valuable lessons Jenny has learned is how to serve as an #EverydayAdvocate for someone she suspects is experiencing intimate partner violence.
“I try to quietly and discreetly engage them to ask if they need help, especially if their potential abuser is nearby,” Jenny said. “Tipping off the abuser could put the individual in a more dangerous situation, so if I’m able to chat with the person privately and safely, I calmly and quietly ask if they need resources and provide the Center’s contact information.”
Jenny encourages everyone to learn how they can support survivors and the Center’s important work throughout Kentuckiana, whether through volunteering, donating goods or funds, or speaking up as an #EverydayAdvocate.
“With help from our fellow citizens, the Center can continue to provide the violence prevention services our community so desperately needs,” said Jenny. “I’m grateful every day that I can be involved with the Center. Here’s to many more years!”