It is always encouraging and comforting to read a ‘success’ story of how someone we have been working with has got from A to B, from a place where they are struggling and feeling hopeless to a point where they are doing well and are feeling hopeful about their lives. These are the stories that we all want to hear- stories of joy and happiness give us hope and energy to keep doing the work that we are.
I always work with the hope and aim that the people I am supporting will make positive changes to their lives. For me, however, the value of my work cannot be summed up or dependent on these changes.
There is value in supporting people who make progress, and value in supporting people who do not. Being there for someone with patience and a listening ear despite them going around in the same circle again, or keeping going after someone that you have worked with for a long time ends their life and you are feeling disillusioned that you can really make a difference. When you support someone to be try to keep their child but they lose them and there is deep sadness. For me, the value of our work is not simply in getting someone from A to B, but in supporting people no matter where they are at. To value people, listen to them, give them space to talk, and support them on their journey through life. For people to know that no matter what – whether they have moved onwards and upwards, or has found themselves back at rock bottom, that we are there to help with hope.