I was recently at a dinner for my friend’s birthday, it was at a restaurant and we were at a large table full of people I hadn’t met before. A couple seats down and across the table from me was a very friendly, smiling girl who introduced herself and asked what I did for a living. I proudly let her know that I work at the Crisis Shelter one of the programs at Covenant House Vancouver. She very knowingly grinned at me stating she was quite familiar with us. Most people give me this response and tell me a story about a donation they made or a person they once heard about that had to use our services. She went onto say that she would love to tell me how she knows Covenant House so well but maybe not across the dinner table.
Upon her departure that evening she came around to my side of the table and told me that she stayed in our Shelter in 2002 and it absolutely saved her life. She said she has no idea what she would have done or where she would be right now if she didn’t discover our services. She has been clean from hard drugs for 10 years now and has a child whom she adores. She said Sister Nancy Brown still calls her every 6 months just to see how she is. I congratulated her on her clean time and she said “I owe it all to Covenant House”. I said “I am glad we were there for you but you did all the work, it is all you, your courage and determination is the reason you are clean.”
I am always very proud to tell people where I work and am often given encouragement and praise for it. This was an unexpected and extremely uplifting encounter though. I am very lucky to work here and to see for myself how much we mean to the people who need us.