Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A day in the life of a nonprofit worker

1. What is your name, organization and job title (you don't have to give your name/organization if you don't want to- it can be anonymous)
Sterling Harris, PAVSA (Program for Aid to Victims of Sexual Assault), Community Education/Case Tracking Coordinator - which only describes maybe 1/10 of what I do!

2. What is the first thing you do when you get in the office?
Check my phone and email messages. Anything to do with clients takes priority. I primarily work with women and girls age 14 and up who have been sexually assaulted. Lately, I seem to be working with more mothers whose children have been assaulted. Most have reported their assaults to law enforcement and I act as a liaison with the criminal justice system. Many need support in other areas of their lives and I do my best to be creative in finding resources and options that may be helpful to them.

3. How do you spend your lunch break?
Usually with my amazing coworkers, sitting around the kitchen table. We often have women from the neighborhood who will drop in around the lunch hour. We will always drum up something so they can join us for lunch, if they choose.

4. Which part of your work do you enjoy most?
Working with women and girls. Many of the people who find themselves in our office have been
discounted by so many people in their own lives. When people who have experienced sexual violence come here, they are valued as survivors and human beings who deserve justice and utmost care.

5. Please finish this sentence: If someone wanted my job, they would have to...never refrain from asking why sexual violence exists and why so many victims are treated so poorly in the system. The person would need to have an open mind, healthy coping skills, good boundaries, solid work ethic and a sense of humor

6. What advice or tips do you have for other nonprofit professionals in your position?
Take care of yourself and never give up.

I am looking for new nonprofit workers to be featured. If you want to share a day in your life, please email me -