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Grateful • Dependable • Kind

Her Story

Meagan Kempenaar

VON - Peterborough-Victoria-Haliburton

Meagan's Story :

When I was a little girl, all I can ever remember is wanting to write – to become a famous author and have a book signing, you know just like the ones you see on tv. Then somewhere after college, those dreams shifted. After taking journalism, I would later enroll in the health care field – total opposites right. This was largely due to the influence that my grandma had on my life. We spent so much time together as I was growing up and I felt as though I had lost a huge part of me when she passed away. Each week I would watch the health care aids come in to help her and thought to myself “I want to do this; I want to make a difference in other’s lives.”

When I first started working at VON and the Adult Day Program, I was pretty shy and quiet. But not anymore. Now, I am the furthest thing from shy. At least my clients and caregivers would never believe that word and my name associated in the same sentence! It took me a long time to be comfortable enough to laugh at myself and really have a sense of humor. When I was younger, I was very serious. But I’ve since learned that it’s okay to laugh at ourselves and that humor can get us through some of our most challenging and darkest days. And that no matter how much you might wonder how you’re going to get through a particular situation or day, you always come out even stronger and more resilient than we ever thought possible.

I often refer to our group (of clients, caregivers, volunteers and staff) at Day Program as my “2nd family” and really and truly, that is what they are to me! There is so much compassion and love; everyone just truly cares about one another so much and it shines through each day.
I feel very lucky to be able to do what I do every single day.