Five Questions With Jasmin F.

Sep 14, 2016 by


Once a month we give you the opportunity to meet some of the wonderful people who help care for Ottawa’s homeless population. This feature, Five Questions With … is posted to Facebook and our website on the 15th of each month. Enjoy.

Five Questions With … Jasmin F.

Q. What made you want to join the Shepherds’ team?

A. I think I always wanted to be in the helping field, and for a long time I didn’t really know where to throw myself until I met a gentleman over a chess match in a public park. The average opponent is quiet, but this guy talked a lot. He talked about living in an emergency shelter for men, he talked about his experiences and how he had felt welcomed there and how the organization had been helpful in connecting him with people who could help him. He also talked about being a veteran and what that was like, what the doctors had told him and what his needs were, and what the process of accessing resources was like. We met a few more times after that, always over chess matches. It was enough to ignite a real interest in the field, and I returned to school that fall to study the related field, graduating in 2009.

I did my student placement at SGH. I wanted to join the Shepherds’ team because I believe in the spirit of the organization and its forward thinking nature. Speaking with various team members and clients during my placement, I had found that the vision of the group was one of genuine compassion and acceptance of all people who would access SGH services. The barriers to accessing services are very low and that makes supports accessible to a great variety of folks in need. This is something I wanted to be a part of.

Q. What is the best part of your job?

A. The best part of my job is the connection that is shared with our clients, seeing that growth in people every day, witnessing the strength of the human spirit and how people have this capacity for enduring and finding meaning in truly challenging times. It’s a testament of the human spirit. I’m also glad I get to be a part of positive change for some people. It can be a rewarding aspect of the job. The next best thing is the team I get to work with. All are bright and creative with a heart of gold.

Q. What would you be doing if you were not at your current job?

A. I would likely be working with the same population somewhere else. I don’t think I would be doing much differently. Every day is different here and there’s a lesson to learn from every new experience.

Q. What’s the one thing you would say about the people you see each day?

A. I want to say that prior to working here, seeing the way these guys were treated out in the world, had greatly impacted my faith in humanity. Given the opportunity to observe how they treat each other while I’m working here, and how they treat the staff here, my faith in humanity is restored.

Q. What do you like to do when you’re not working at Shepherds of Good Hope?

A. When I am not working at SGH, I like to get together with friends and family. Working here made me appreciate the fact I have a loving family even more, and spending time with them has become instrumental in my self-care routine. Otherwise I’m a member of both the Ottawa Field-Naturalist Club and the Club des ornithologues de l’Outaouais and spend much of my time participating in their related activities.


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