Here at Covenant House Michigan, Dianne Davis is a grandmother figure, with her kind smile, ever-present bowl of candy and warm greetings. She makes everyone, staff, volunteers and youth, feel like they’ve come home to family. In her close to three years as CHM’s receptionist, Davis has talked to a lot of distressed teens on the phone and seen a lot of faces walk through the door. Her role makes her the first contact many people have with CHM.
Davis’ work requires a lot of understanding and patience, as many of our youth need a kind ear when they’re in a tough spot. “On the phone I sometimes hear a tremor in their voices, especially if it’s a young lady,” Davis shared. “Even though I can’t give them a bed on the spot, I try to reassure them that everything is going to be ok. I find out if they are in a safe spot and get them to whichever department can best help them.”
Many times a young resident will come in the building to talk to a staff person about a problem and Davis picks up on their distress. “I know from being a parent that if I listen and let them vent, they’ll calm down,” she continued, “I used to let my son talk until he was done. Then he’d say, ‘Well?’ Once he’d finished talking it was easier to talk to him. He just needed me to listen first.”
This Mother’s Day, we salute you, Grandma Davis. Thank you for your love and commitment to your Covenant House family!