Volunteer Spotlight: Joanne Garlow

This month, get to know N Street Village volunteer Joanne Garlow. Joanne began volunteering in our community in 2006 and has volunteered over 1,000 hours as an overnight volunteer at Luther Place Night Shelter.  Additionally, Joanne is a recurring donor supporting N Street Village’s mission financially on a monthly basis.  Let’s get to know Joanne:

I am computer programmer for NPR.org and I attend Foundry United Methodist church in the Dupont Circle area.  I grew up in the D.C. area and my parents and grandparents on both sides are from D.C., so I am a true Washingtonian — but interestingly, there isn’t a single politician in my family. I became interested in N Street Village when I moved downtown in 2006 because I wanted to focus my volunteering energy on women who are homeless.  

What do you enjoy most about volunteering at N Street Village? A few months ago, a new woman joined Luther Place Night Shelter and when she came into the office for her medication her head was down and she wouldn’t look me in the eye.  She barely spoke.  After a few weeks she was surprised when I remembered her name.  Then a month or so later she expected me to know her name and said hi to me.  This past week we made small talk about the weather.  I’m hoping next time I come she tells me a joke.  This scenario gets played out again and again at Luther Place Night Shelter – women come in at their lowest point and with the help of the other ladies and the counselors, they regain their confidence and their laughter.  That is what I enjoy most about N Street Village.

In addition to serving regularly, why do you support N Street Village financially? At Foundry United Methodist Church we are working to end homelessness in D.C.  Much of our efforts are going into building supportive housing and advocating with the D.C. government to build supportive and affordable housing.  I thought I needed to put my money where my mouth was.  N Street Village has an established system for moving people into permanent homes and I want to support that.

Why is it important to support N Street Village? Women who are homeless are so vulnerable; we cannot sit idly by and leave them there.  N Street Village has a proven established system for helping women move into safe housing.  It has been recognized for its efficient management too so I feel like my donations are being well used.

Consider supporting N Street Village all year long by signing up as a recurring monthly donor.  Your donation of $25 each month will help the women we serve reach their goals in 2012!

About nstreetvillage

N Street Village is a community of empowerment and recovery for homeless and low-income women in Washington, D.C. With comprehensive services addressing both emergency and long-term needs, we help women achieve personal stability and make gains in their housing, income, employment, mental health, physical health, and addiction recovery.
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