Each of our amazing board members chose the profession of social work for a reason and we would like to share their stories with you. Stay tuned for a post about each of the social workers who represent YOU on the NASW-NC Board.
Cathy Walsh, AA, AS
Undergraduate Student Representative
As a child I experienced being a recipient of various services from the Department of Health and Human Services in San Francisco. I remember the hours my mother and I would sit waiting for our over-worked social worker to review our case and the relief in my mother’s eyes when we were again approved for Food Stamps and Medi-Cal. It is not just her relief or the noises, smells, and stacks of files that still remain in my memory, but also the lack of hope in the eyes of the clients as each one waited their turn while trying to calm their crying children.
As a teenager, I became interested in how to instill hope into the families of my neighborhood. I found that the challenges and needs of the inner-city over-whelmed the county programs that were being offered. I became involved with the local Salvation Army in our district working with many of the children and their families in the mainly Latino and African American community where I lived.
I decided to return to school and receive my degree in social work when I realized the many opportunities and doors being a professional social worker can open. Realizing that there are more to the stack of files then what I had saw as a child but there are actual lives that the files represent continue to drive me in my journey. Going beyond being in a helping position as a volunteer to becoming a professional social worker will allow me to not only make a difference in the lives of individuals but also be involved in social justice issues and to have a broader networking base. Along with this comes the support of the NASW and the extended community that we have as members. I also realized that having the guidance of the NASW Code of Ethics and the many conferences and trainings will help me be of greater help to those in my community.
I am excited and thankful for the opportunity to be a member of the NASW Executive Board as a BSW Student Representative. I am looking forward to an exciting year of growth, collaboration and support for our membership.
Cathy is a current BSW Student at North Carolina Central University.