Please join us in welcoming Adam Brunell! Adam joins N Street Village’s Development Team as its Volunteer and In-Kind Gifts Coordinator. In this role, Adam is looking forward to meeting our current volunteers and continuing to match volunteers with meaningful opportunities, specifically at The Patricia Handy Place for Women. Adam has recently shared with us more about himself and interest in working at N Street Village. Let’s get to know Adam…
After graduating with a degree from Vassar College in mathematics, I worked for several environmental organizations as a field organizer around such issues as limiting carbon emissions from power plants and reducing dangerous pollution from coal-fired power plants. After several years of organizing at the systemic level, I decided I needed to work directly with people. I then started a position as the assistant to the executive director at Hyacinth’s Place, a permanent supportive housing program in Northeast DC for homeless women with mental health diagnoses. I am excited to continue this line of work here at N Street Village.
NSV: Where are you from originally from?
AB: I was born in Plano, Texas and I grew up in different parts of Connecticut. I’ve been in DC for 2 years and I love it!
NSV: What inspired you to work at N Street Village?
AB: I had a serious brain injury less than a year after getting out of a college, and then pretty soon that led to the worsening of my symptoms. I had a really tough time getting it together, life just became really hard. I only made it through because of the support of my friends and family. What inspired me to work at the Village is the hope to do what people once did for me—to make someone’s trying times a bump in the road rather than the road itself.
NSV: What do you do on a daily basis at N Street Village?
AB: Every day is a little bit different! In the first few weeks here, I led a team of corporate volunteers, picked up trays of muffins from a local bakery, received hundreds of donated items, instituted policies for communicating with our new housing program, and learned our volunteer and donation databases. You never know what your day will look like!
NSV: What do you wish other people knew about N Street Village?
AB: I wish people knew how just how much the Village offers– emergency housing, temporary housing, permanent supportive housing, housing for those in recovery, housing for those with HIV/AIDS, and housing for seniors– over four hundred beds in total. And that’s just housing! The Village also offers yoga lessons and employment training, has a dentist’s and doctor’s office on site, and is the only place in DC to serve food for free 365 days a year no matter the weather, guaranteed. When I first started working here, the breadth of the Village’s services surprised me, and I think our volunteers are also amazed at the range of programs we offer.
NSV: As someone who works with N Street Village volunteers nearly every day, what impact do you see our volunteers having on our community?
AB: Not only are our volunteers essential to the functioning of the Village, but also they are a key source of positivity and warmth. In order to be successful, the Village has to be a place of kindness and hope. The volunteers are big part of that. Their enthusiasm is contagious and their warm-heartedness makes the community a brighter place.
NSV: Describe N Street Village in 3 words:
Affirming, inspiring, uplifting.
NSV: When you are not at N Street Village, what do you do in your spare time?
AB: Outside of work, I spend my time playing basketball outside, learning strange instruments (the banjo is about as annoying in real life as you think it is), and talking about the patriarchy.
NSV: What is your favorite YouTube video and why
AB: My favorite YouTube video has to be Kerri Strug completing her final vault in the 1996 Olympics! After seriously spraining her ankle and tearing her tendon, she could barely walk back to finish her final fault. She had to complete one more vault for the US gymnastics team to win, and the way she barely sticks the landing before collapsing to the ground always gets me. So inspiring! To be honest I’m actually crying a little bit while writing this.