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Paying It Forward: A Mother & Daughter’s Heartwarming Volunteer Journey

Meet Amber Hersma and Cathy Weiland. A mother/daughter duo that just completed spring Facilitator Training but have a long history with The WARM Place. So long, it goes back to the very start of our organization! Their story is truly inspirational and illustrates the importance of our mission at The WARM Place.

Tell us about yourself!

Amber  – I’m happily engaged and looking forward to being a stepmom. I have a very demanding but rewarding compliance career with Sabre, where my mom, Cathy worked for 17 years. I enjoy volunteering at The WARM Place and for Tarrant County Meals on Wheels.

Cathy – I’m one of 9 children, lost a brother to an accident and a sister to suicide. Lost both of my parents and had the fortune to be at home with both when they passed in hospice. I enjoyed my 1st time as a facilitator for 13 years here at the WARM Place and after a long break I am excited to return. I am happily retired and enjoy time with family and friends as well as volunteering at The WARM Place and with Tarrant County Meals on Wheels.

 

When did you first learn about The WARM Place and what brought you here?

Amber – My first experience with the WARM Place was in 1990 when my mom and I joined group after my aunt completed suicide. The WARM Place saved my life. Our group was incredible and the amount of support we received was life changing.

Cathy – I heard of the WARM Place from Peggy Bohme (Co-founder of The WARM Place). My daughter Amber and I first attended in 1990 after the loss of my sister. We found a home away from home at The WARM Place that was a safe place for us both.

 

What would you say is your favorite thing about volunteering with The WARM Place?

Amber – Making a difference in the life of a child.

Cathy – Seeing the amount of support provided and how it helps families and the children. 

 

What’s been one of your most memorable moments volunteering at The WARM Place?

Amber – So far it has been the facilitator training. The extensive training helps prepare us for success and reminds us that what we do is very important.

Cathy – When attending one of the anniversary celebrations, children, that were now teenagers, from my former groups lined up to each give me a hug and a thank you. That meant a great deal that they remembered me and that I was able to help them in their grief journey. I took a break, but I was previously a volunteer at TWP for 13 years.

 

What would you say to someone who is thinking about volunteering at The WARM Place?

Amber  – Be ready to commit a piece of your heart for these children. This will be the single most rewarding volunteer experience of your life.

Cathy  – Making a difference in a child’s life is incredibly rewarding. Children are resilient and have the ability to heal when given the tools and support necessary. You will not regret being a part of this amazing place.

Alex Baird

Alex Baird

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