Shelter for the Strong-Hearted

by Stacie Smith, DV Counselor/ Volunteer Coordinator

As the newest staff member at MEG’s House, I was asked to write an article about my experiences since coming on board in September of last year. When I think back over the many faces of the women and children who have come and gone from MEG’s since my coming aboard, the thing that stands out the most in my mind is the tremendous strength and courage of those women.

I have worked in social services all my life, and have had many experiences with social problems and the hardships people face. Never before though, have I been so inspired by the inner resiliency of the clients I am working with.

The women I am working with have stories of hardship that often predate an abusive relationship with a recent partner. Many have broken childhood histories, financial struggles, obstacles that they have faced educationally, and a lifetime of difficult choices. Part of my role as their caseworker and counselor is to motivate and encourage them to make positive changes toward a brighter future. However, it is often I who end up being encouraged.

I have witnessed women with bruised bodies taking time to uplift a newcomer to the shelter and make them feel welcome. I have seen women with little or no family support become each other’s family. I have watched as women come into the shelter with little to smile about gradually grow wide smiles with contagious laughter. Daily I am privileged to walk alongside some of these brave women on a piece of their road to new tomorrows, and it has been the highest honor.

If you too are interested in working with women who are recovering from an abusive relationship contact Stacie about volunteer opportunities and the many ways you can help at (864) 229-8141.