MY JOURNEY TO THE
Without knowing a soul, I arrived in my new city of Windsor, ON on Dec. 20/10. From the bus station I went straight to the Well-Come Centre where I was expected. Upon my arrival I was greeted with warm and welcoming smiles from everyone, including the residents. Although I was afraid, there was a peace at the Centre that washed over me. The staff was very kind, considerate, patient, concerned, comforting, nurturing, knowledgeable, very easy to talk to and was always ready to lend an ear. I was treated well and with dignity!
I also enjoyed the games we played, our outings, having use of the kitchen when we wanted to bake, our weekly house and focus group meetings but mostly the help (in all ways) that the staff provided me. My time spent at the Well-Come Centre allowed me to start my healing process and for that, I will always be grateful and indebted to ALL the staff, students and volunteers that made my stay so enjoyable. The love and kindness I received can never be repaid but I will pay it forward in their honour.Leaving the Well-Come Centre was difficult and I missed everyone dearly. It will ALWAYS be my first home in Windsor. Since my departure, I’ve become a member of the Board of Directors as an Advisor, I’m also the Resident Advisor which is a “liaison” between the residents and staff and I run the Tuesday Drop-in as well. I’ve also met a lot of great people through the Centre and their Community Partners which has opened many doors to me that allows me to volu nteer in different sectors of the Community. I also sit on the Steering Committee for “Take Back the Night” which is a yearly Rally and March to bring awareness to the violence and abuse perpertrated against women.
The first time I went to a Women Making a Difference meeting with the Executive Director of the Well-Come Centre, Lady Laforet, I was very nervous and excited at the same time. I wasn’t sure what to expect! Once there, I was immediately put at ease from our reception by Maggie and Chryl who greeted us with warmth and sincere kindness at the sign-in table. There was such a positive vibe in the room, I felt enveloped by so much love and acceptance, it made me emotional. The other women were very kind and welcoming as well, which made it a lot easier for me to share my story.
My wish for being involved with WMAD is that in some small way, I, can make a difference in the lives that I encounter through this wonderful Organization!!!
~Natalie Nicole P. St. Martin