How long have you been a part of this community?
I started out in the fall of 2014 mainly as a driver for respite while also helping at the occasional Tuesday night prep. I loved it so much and wanted to be able to devote more of my time, so I convinced Laura to let me do in internship at Haywood as part of my last semester at UNCA.
Why are you a companion? Why are you here?
I am a companion because Haywood Street is one of the first places in Asheville that I have felt at home. I found family here, family that I know would do anything for me, and I the same for them. I am constantly in awe of the selfless love and generosity I witness there, and I know that I am a better person because of this community.
Where do you help serve and how are you involved with Haywood Street?
I come on Wednesdays to not only enjoy the great food and even better company, but to also record the prayers shared by members of the community so that they can be incorporated into the cookbook that Dave and I are working on. I have also recently been promoted to “security”, so now on Wednesday’s you can find me helping direct the exit traffic! One of my favorite ways to serve at Haywood Street is at respite. I hang out there on Thursday’s while Jody is away, and I fill in for overnights whenever I can!
Is there a story you would share about your experience?
I have made so many favorite memories in the short time that I have been a part of this community, but one of my favorite experiences happened during an overnight at respite. It was getting late (aka. the time when I try to figure out who I can charm into staying up and keeping me company for a while!) when we started talking about card games. Upon hearing that I didn’t know how to play spades, a group of the guys came together to teach me how, leading to a very lively game (that I was pretty good at!). In that same night, we watched a scary movie, and I got to spend some quality time with Rob in the wee hours of the morning when he got up to cook everyone breakfast. Any time I get to spend just hanging out and getting to know people in respite is time that I love.
What is one of your favorite things to do when you’re not here?
Now that I am officially done with college (woohoo!) my favorite thing to do is RELAX! I spend a lot of time reading, writing, and playing with my cat Charlie. I’m also prone to going on a good Netflix binge. Something that not a lot of people know about me is that I’m a total thrill-seeker, so this summer I’ll hopefully be spending a lot of time skydiving!
What would you tell other people who don’t know about Haywood Street?
That Haywood is not like any place you’ve been before. To go in with an open mind and an open heart and you will leave changed for the better. And BE YOURSELF!
Pictured above: Annie volunteering in the garden at Haywood Street!