If you’ve ever visited Living Room’s program offices, chances are you’ve been greeted with Tedra’s million-dollar smile. As the Program Support Specialist, she is the organization’s primary contact for clients reaching out to and visiting Living Room for the first time. But make no mistake: Tedra is not a receptionist. She is so much more.
I got a chance to shadow her this week. There, I quickly saw how her ability to connect with and assist clients is as powerful as her joyful personality is contagious. Take a moment to learn more about Tedra and the impact of her work.
What surprised you when you first started working at Living Room?
When I first started working at Living Room, I was aware that HIV/AIDS was an issue in Georgia, in Atlanta, but I didn’t realize just how large the HIV+ population was here. I was also surprised at how many of our young people are positive and need housing support.
You might come across those stats on the news or an article online, but by doing what I do, the number of people living with HIV/AIDS in the area became very real for me.
What do you find most powerful about the work you do?
I just love helping people. It’s something I’ve always done. And being of service to our clients, by helping them get connected to our services, it’s very fulfilling to me.
The people we see are dealing with so much, to say the least. Some are sick, feeling ill, are under incredible stress, and grieving. So in addition to helping them get housing, I do my best to brighten their day, bring them a little bit of sunshine, no matter how big or small. Because sometimes it’s so important to let people know, “I care about you and what you’re going through.”
What’s it like working at Living Room?
I’ve been lucky enough to always have a great team to work with in my professional career. And Living Room is something special. Folks are nice, approachable, and love what they do.
To be honest with you, we feel like a family.