The Responsibility of Helping Others: Loryna's Story

The Responsibility of Helping Others: Loryna's Story

The 2023 graduates of the Concentric women’s program all reported improvements in the following areas as a result of this program: their confidence in navigating local resources, their sense of hopefulness for life in West Michigan, and their ability to plan for the future.

This is what being deeply rooted looks like. This is why investment in community leaders matters. 

Each individual’s experience speaks of the uniqueness of their own journey, of their strengths, ideas, of the people who walked alongside them as they grew. Loryna is a Concentric Leader, currently leading the Ukrainian group. Below is an excerpt from her speech at this year's fundraising luncheon. 

 a chart indicating the improvements reported by concentric members

Helping others has always been important to me! In difficult times for me, I always had people who helped me. I also always wanted to be such a support for someone. But I could not even imagine that I would help people from my country who are fleeing from the war.

The lives of Ukrainians changed on February 24 at 4:20 am. Many people had to go 4,770 miles from home and start building a life from scratch.

I remember the first call from Treetops. It happened December last year, and I was very excited and a little nervous because helping people is a big responsibility. I was worried if I would be able to do it, but Treetops had several months to prepare us. And it helped a lot. They gave us confidence and made it clear that we are not alone and that we can always turn to them and ask for help.

I learned how to be patient because when you help people it is not easy sometimes. Not only do I help women, but they also often teach me something new.

loryna speaking on stage at the fall luncheon

Now all the women in my group have full-time jobs, and 4 of them have a driver's license. I am always surprised how quickly they achieve their goals! I am proud of each of them and they have never once complained that it is difficult for them or that they will not be able to achieve something.

Seeing people's gratitude is the best reward. I am also very grateful for each of you, because it means that you are interested in helping others. We have the ability to change other people's lives for the better and give them hope and add happiness.