Thursday, April 3, 2014

Jen's Story

We to share with you, stories from our volunteers. Up first is the story of one of the Halifax Community Health Board members, Jen Powley. Here is a snapshot of her experience in joining, and participating with the board.

As a quadriplegic, I have assistants with me for nearly all my waking hours. I hired Jesse as a neurology student. She told me about applying for a Community Development Fund grant through the Halifax Community Health Board to help run a summer day camp. She was planning to run it in order to introduce seniors to the arts and convince them that they could be creative. She encouraged me to apply to sit on the Health Board so I could pick “worthy applicants” like her.
I did apply to the Health Board, but then steered clear of selecting grant recipients.
Though I am not directly involved in deciding who gets funding, the fact that we empower community members to improve the health of their fellow community members is the thing I’m most proud of.
Working for the Ecology Action Centre as the transportation co-ordinator, I was well-versed on how detrimental the automobile was for both human health and for the health of our planet. Part of me feels like I should take that knowledge and apply it to the work of the Health Board, but I’m also well-versed in both municipal and provincial politics. I feel this is a more unique strength that I can capitalize on to help move health issues forward with decision-makers, as well as community advocates.