Kathryn had it all – a university degree, a great job as an instructor with BCIT’s Broadcast and Media Communications Department, a beautiful son and daughter, and a husband.
One day, police were called to her home because of a domestic incident. When Kathryn met with a Victim Services worker called to the scene, the woman told Kathryn she was in an abusive relationship.
It can’t be me “I didn’t know it,” Kathryn says. “I remember thinking this isn’t me. How can this be me? Look around.
“Appearances are really deceiving. What I was projecting to the outside world was that my life was perfect and I was hiding all this negativity and abuse and I was accepting it.”
She got help for herself and her children through various social services agencies in the Delta area. “Deltassist Family & Community Services Society helped out with counselling and childcare and my children made use of a program offered through Options Community Services Society for kids who witness abuse,” Kathryn says.
“What I didn’t know at the time was that the services I was using were funded by United Way.”
Last spring when BCIT posted the United Way Loaned Representative position, Kathryn applied. “I thought what a great way to give back to society. Then I did my homework on the organization and that’s when I realized I’d made use of United Way-funded services.“
Kathryn joined 43 other passionate individuals who made a difference in their communities by working in the Loaned and Sponsored Representative Program for the 2010 United Way campaign.
Kathryn became an Impact Speaker, a person dedicated to sharing her story and the impact United Way-funded programs made on her life. She delivered 60 presentations to Lower Mainland workplaces.
“I asked to be an Impact Speaker because I really wanted to tell my story. We often think people in need are just the people on the streets or immigrants, but they can be your neighbour living on a nice street. Anyone of us is at risk at anytime. It really could be you; it was me.”
Her experience was overwhelmingly positive. “So many people said I helped them, but I think they helped me.”
Participate in a truly unique professional development opportunity while giving back to your community. Learn more about the United Way of the Lower Mainland Loaned and Sponsored Representative Program.