- authority or power given to someone to do something
- the process of becoming stronger and more confident, especially in controlling one’s life and claiming one’s rights.
Empowerment for me is the strongest and most valuable word in the dictionary and it’s the reason why I’ve chosen to support the Saints Foundation. They empower through inspiration.
Empowerment is taking the raw materials from the young, disadvantaged or disabled and turning their energy into something positive. Inspiring them to lead a better life through knowledge and nurturing and to take control of their lives. They give them the ability to develop themselves. Empowerment means recognising your strengths and weaknesses and using this knowledge to make positive those choices.
Give a man a fish and you’ll feed him for the day. Give him a fishing rod and teach him how to fish he’ll never go hungry. The Saints Foundation provides the fishing rod, shows how to hook the bait and where to throw the line and this was perfectly demonstrated recently by Gary, June, Aaron, and Julie all received employment after completing the Foundation’s employability programme after selling the Big Issue.
Lisa Latona is a Saints4Sport Project Officer. Originally from the north of England Lisa’s very much part of the fabric of the Saints Foundation and their projects in enabling the disadvantaged and challenged to better themselves. Lisa was at the heart of the project that enabled Gary, June and Julie to eventually end up in employment.
I asked Lisa, what her proudest moment was in empowering people through the Foundation.
“It’s so hard to pick one ‘proud’ moment when honestly, every single day I’m so proud. Proud of my project, working for the foundation but especially for all the participants Involved. Every hour they are with me, they are there because they want to be. They want to improve their life in some sense, whether this is mentally, physically, or emotionally. My participants are always thanking me for my support and that I have helped them achieve things they didn’t think possible but it’s actually them who have put in all the hard work, I have just given them the tools to make positive changes, they are the ones who decided to use them.
Their hard work and dedication to change their life for the better is my daily inspiration, when I’m feeling mentally, or emotionally weak I look to them. They have no idea of the positive impact they have on my life and I’m very lucky.
I have worked with individuals who never thought they would overcome addiction, social anxiety, depression, but they do – they lead healthy lifestyles, achieve qualifications, make new friends, and gain employment. It’s amazing.”
Someone who has the ability to empower a person truly is a hero. The gift of empowerment is the biggest gift anyone can receive.
This is why I’m raising money for the Saints Foundation through the Big Bike Challenge. If you’d like to sponsor me then click on the Just Giving link.