How can I help?

05.02.19

Julia Felton gives a window into her work at the front desk.

Q: What do you do at Health Care for the Homeless?
As a Client Access Associate, my job is to find out what people need, register them and direct them to care. We see 100 to 200 clients on a normal day at the downtown clinic. I also help set the tone. If I came to an organization and I was ignored or disrespected, I wouldn’t come back. I have the chance to make sure clients have a healthy experience.

Q: What does it take to be successful at your job? 
Compassion. Empathy. I’m motivated by the people we serve. I’ve been in a situation where my children and I have been homeless. I was never on the street, but I can relate. I want to see people become housed, healthy and mentally stable. I look forward to clients who come back and say, “You helped me a lot,” or “This is a better day.”

Q: What is rewarding about your job? 
People come in feeling hopeless, helpless and emotionally distraught. I try to stay calm and build a good rapport. There was a client who used to yell at me every morning, and I’d just say “Hello.” Then one day he said “Good morning” instead. I was ecstatic! Later, he told me that he lost his housing after he got hurt and couldn’t play football anymore. He went from a man who used to yell at me to a man who wanted to sit and have a conversation. It was very touching.
 


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