By Sunny Lim
Volunteers form the cornerstone of Break the Silence, a survivor-led organization. Our volunteers devote their time, passion, and effort to aid and empower domestic violence survivors. They support survivors in many ways–operating our helpline, advocating for BTS through social media pages, sharing stories, and engaging communities.
Because our volunteers make a difference in many survivors’ lives, BTS enjoys recognizing them for their hard work.
February’s Volunteer of the Month (VOM), KayLa Allen started volunteering as managing director in September 2018. KayLa found BTS after searching for opportunities to grow and develop her strengths in leadership.
During her search, she felt discouraged after being told by several organizations she didn’t have experience on paper. These experiences left KayLa feeling she wasn’t good enough, but she kept digging.
Something kept telling her to go to VolunteerMatch.
“I now know that something was the Holy Spirit,” KayLa said.
Without even scrolling through the site, the first opportunity was BTS and a listing for managing director.
After her first interview with BTS, she said she knew she found the perfect place for her. KayLa said her second interview solidified everything for her–she knew BTS was her new home.
BTS saw beyond what was on paper and gave KayLa the ability to work remotely while managing her graduate studies.
KayLa said finding BTS was in divine timing.
“Being a survivor-turned-warrior, I have learned so much and have so much to give,” she said. “BTS is a place where I can help others, give back all that I have learned in my life and my master’s program.”
Volunteering at BTS has impacted KayLa on many levels, bringing her joy and giving her opportunities to help others through difficult situations. KayLa’s hard work shows through her enthusiasm for covering topics in her created “Weekly Care Calls” with team directors and coordinators along with her self-empowerment workshops with the entire BTS team.
BTS Social Media Coordinator Amy Marie Thomson said KayLa always finds time to be there for those who need her.
“KayLa has been with BTS for a short time, but she’s already left her mark on our organization,” Amy said. “She always finds time to be there for those who need her, and her kindness knows no limits.”
BTS Social Media Director Brian Nguyen agreed with KayLa’s lasting impact on BTS.
“KayLa is a breath of fresh air that exudes leadership and positivity,” Brian said. “I’m truly grateful that she’s on our team and excited to see the direction she helps take BTS.”
BTS Volunteer Outreach Coordinator Daphne Hesse said she couldn’t say enough about KayLa’s positive impact on the team.
“She brings words of wisdom weekly to us,” Daphne said. “She solves problems, she’s also a great friend, and has been there for a shoulder to lean on.”
The entire BTS team thanks KayLa for her hard work, wonderful personality, and compassion. KayLa thanks Daphne for seeing something special in her and to Kristen for knowing her personality would be a blessing to the team.
She also thanks team leaders, members, and the extended BTS family. This year, she is looking forward to creating new opportunities for the team by bringing “KayLa’s Positivity Corner” and finishing her MPH this spring.