Surprisingly, the number one question that people ask me has nothing to do with HIV. The most common question that I am asked is, “If you don’t pay yourself, how do you support yourself in life; bills, fuel, food, rent, etc.” While this question is personal in nature, it is clearly a concern for people that research our charity. As always, I will provide a transparent and honest response.
The answer is simple. 2 years ago, when I founded I’m Positive, Inc. I was able to sit down and talk to my boyfriend’s family about my vision, hopes and plans for the charity. My passion and enthusiasm for the cause simply could not be contained and permeated from my soul. In that conversation, I learned that Dr. Goodrich (my father-in-law) had a brother die of HIV-related illnesses in the 1980’s. Dr. Goodrich and Mrs. Goodrich immediately pledged their full support for my vision, hopes and plans.
The Goodrich family’s support has gone beyond anything I could have ever imagined. They leased a 2011 Honda Accord to help me get to and from appointments. They do not charge me rent. They pay for my groceries. With the pressure of earning a paycheck being alleviated, I am now able to fully commit to our vision, hopes and plans for the first time since the idea of I’m Positive, Inc. was born in 2003.
I understand that very few people are in the position that I am in. While I could sit at home, go to school full time, travel the world, etc. – I choose to donate my time, energy, sweat, tears and soul to this cause. For the first time, I do not have to worry about which bill to pay and which one to let go past due. Coming from a poor family (single mother, raised on Welfare and food stamps) I was apprehensive to accept the help that the Goodrich family offered. However, with their generous support I am able to dedicate my life to I’m Positive, Inc.
I hope this answers the question of how I support myself while working without pay at our charity. I encourage more people to make a commitment to donate their time to charities. You may not be able to dedicate your whole life like I am, but every minute you spend helping others is a priceless, wholesome reward.
President & Executive Director
Office: 888-799-9355 ext. 6001