1) When did you first get involved with W.O.M.A.N., Inc.?
I began volunteering with W.O.M.A.N., Inc. in May 2014, so I’m relatively new here.
2) What inspired you to do anti-violence work?
I used to work as a translator at an immigration law firm and in the course of helping our clients submit their asylum claims I witnessed countless women recall and retell incredibly powerful stories of how they escaped violence at home and set out to start new lives for themselves and their children. I wasn’t working in the domestic violence field, but the strength that they demonstrated profoundly moved me. Ever since then I’ve been interested in getting more directly involved in anti-violence work, but never found the right opportunity.
3) What kind of opportunities have you been involved with here?
I came on board as a social media volunteer because I’ve had a lot of experience in the social media and non-profit world. Originally, I was focused on trying to ramp up W.O.M.A.N., Inc.’s YouTube presence and hoping to do some blogging on domestic violence issues. I quickly realized that one of the biggest needs for the organization was an updated website and have been actively engaged in building a new and improved website for the organization. I know a fair amount about building a website, but it’s been a challenging experience trying to build a website that meets the unique needs of the domestic violence community. I’m really excited about the website and can’t wait to see what people think.
4) How has your involvement impacted your life?
When I first reached out to W.O.M.A.N., Inc. I wasn’t sure what kind of role I could play as a volunteer that would make a difference in the larger struggle to end domestic violence. I am not a survivor of domestic violence, I don’t have a history of working with survivors – I am a white, straight, married guy and I wasn’t sure if I was the kind of volunteer they were looking for.
What I learned from the first minute I walked through the doors at W.O.M.A.N., Inc. was that everyone has a role to play and everyone can make a difference. Learning how to be the best ally in the fight against domestic violence is a life-long learning process, and W.O.M.A.N., Inc. has helped spark a fire in me to keep on learning and to find new ways to empower myself and others to get involved. I am so proud of the work W.O.M.A.N., Inc. does and the role I’ve been able to play within the organization.
The impact it’s had on me goes far beyond what I experience while I’m volunteering. It’s something I’ll carry with me the rest of my life.
5) What pieces of wisdom would you share with new volunteers or community members who are interested in supporting W.O.M.A.N., Inc.?
Get involved today, seriously. It’s an amazing organization with dedicated staff that will help bring out the super volunteer in you.