Ms. Geraldine joined the WomenStrong DC (WSDC) program nearly a year ago, with the dual aims of improving her health and obtaining better housing. She enjoys participating in such WSDC activities as the Walking Club, Let’s Talk and the Sewing and Crochet class.
Although Ms. Geraldine is very quiet and rarely speaks in groups, she has begun to blossom as a result of her interactions with the other women in the program and with her Wellness Coordinator. Even though speaking in public is difficult for Ms. Geraldine, after six months in the program she volunteered to represent the WSDC program during Bread for the City’s annual fundraiser, the Good Hope Gala. Ms. Geraldine spoke about her experience in the WomenStrong DC program to a crowd of public officials, corporate partners and DC philanthropists, including current and potential funders. She was both talkative and spunky during the event, enthusiastically promoting ways in which WSDC can be very impactful to more women in Washington, DC.
“I was very nervous to talk at first, but I was able to share how the program has helped me and can help other women,” she said.
Ms. Geraldine’s efforts bore fruit: she was able to solicit several donations for WSDC. She also volunteered twice in recent weeks with her WomenStrong DC peers and staff to prepare food for the homeless at the Fort Stanton Recreation Center, as part of an effort by the sister DC nonprofit Martha’s Table.
In late October, Ms. Geraldine was the recipient of a Good Hope Award, a special commendation awarded Bread for the City volunteers who have provided exceptional service to the organization and the people it serves. During her acceptance speech, she graciously thanked Bread for the City and WomenStrong DC for all the assistance she has received. Her ability to do this in front of such a large group of people shows just how much progress Ms. Geraldine has made. and how much of a full member of the WSDC and Bread for the City SE community she has already become.