This month, we would like to introduce you to N Street Village staff member Jinnesse Taylor. In August 2014, Jinnesse began her journey with community as a Washington AIDS Partnership AmeriCorps member in our Wellness Center. Recently, she has transitioned into a new position, Day Services Advocate, at our drop-in day programs. Let’s get to know Jinnesse…
When I started in August 2014, I had no idea how much the women of N Street Village would take me in with open arms and illustrate the great need coupled with love in this community . N Street Village taught me the importance of listening to everyone’s stories – a skill vital for any medical professional. A skill I could not turn away from in just twelve months. This simple yet monumental fact is why I am so grateful for the opportunity to defer my matriculation into medical school for a year to continue being a part of the vibrant N Street Village community.
NSV: Where are you from originally from?
JT: I am originally from Florida, but hail from St. Louis, Missouri where I finished my undergraduate studies. I moved to D.C. last summer to pursue a year as a Washington AIDS Partnership AmeriCorps member at N Street Village before matriculating into medical school in the Fall of 2015.
NSV: What inspired you to work at N Street Village?
JT: When deciding where I wanted my AmeriCorps placement to be, the following line from N Street Village’s Statement of Culture and Community stood out to me: “We honor and respect each other for the diversity of our experiences and the insight we bring in our work.” I knew I wanted to learn as much as possible during my service year, but who knew I would be able to find a place that highly values every single person for what they can contribute and take away from the table. I wanted to become part of a family and I have definitely been able to do that here.
NSV: What do you do on a daily basis at N Street Village?
JT: As the HIV Health Promotion Specialist at N Street Village, my role was multifaceted. I facilitated health education classes on topics ranging from HIV to Diabetes and provided staff and client support on a myriad of issues revolving around women’s health. But most importantly, I was available to listen and support the women in all aspects of health and wellness. Recently, I have accepted a position as a Day Services Advocate in both the Wellness Center and Bethany Women’s Day Center. In this role, I will have the opportunity to work in two programs all the while providing support in volunteer service coordination within these two programs.
NSV: What do you wish other people knew about N Street Village?
JT: N Street Village is a community unlike anything I have been ever been apart of. It is like my family away from home. I wish people knew to never make assumptions about this wonderful facility before they come and appreciate this amazing space. It is a wonderful resource for women in the vast jungle of social services in the area.
NSV: As someone who works with N Street Village volunteers nearly every day, what impact do you see our volunteers having on our community?
JT: In the words of Helen Keller – “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.” Volunteers are to N Street Village like bees to a garden – without them we could not flourish year after year. They are central to the N Street Village garden and to say we are grateful is an understatement.
NSV: Describe N Street Village in 3 words:
JT: lovable, dynamic and joy
NSV: What is your favorite YouTube video and why?
JT: Whenever you need an adorably comical pick-me-up just pull this video right on up :)