To celebrate Mother’s Day, Cram Crew visited the Houston Area Women’s Center (HAWC). Established in 1977, the center has grown from a humble volunteer effort into an expansive organization, deeply committed to social change in the city. Serving as a home base for survivors of domestic and sexual violence, the center provides a support system and sense of community through counseling, opportunities for meaningful work, and a safe environment for the residents’ children.
We arrived at the HAWC the Friday before Mother’s Day, our arms towering with Italian food and pink carnations. As we piled pasta onto paper plates and, later, as we passed out the pale flowers, each one with a tiny note knotted to its stem, we were met with a myriad of personalities, an undercurrent of unique histories. Some of the women were bubbly; some boisterous; some reserved, polite, quietly mannered. Many of the women came up to us several times. We learned about their children, some of whom were running about the cafeteria, bright and bursting with energy, and also about their roommates, or the events of their morning. Though these exchanges were brief, through each we were met with the start of a story, a unique history, brimming in all the small details.
There were several thank you’s passed between our staff and the residents that day. And in each of these instances, the appreciation was certainly reciprocal.
For information on how you can volunteer and get involved with the Houston Area Women’s Center, please click here.
– Natalie T.