Kindness of a Stranger


Thursday, February 15, 2018 – 8:45am

Long Beach, CA


WomenShelter of Long Beach recognizes that fleeing domestic violence is intimidating, lonely, and much more. It is for this reason that we attempt to do our very best at ensuring that each and every client who seeks our support and shelter feels welcomed.  Every new client receives a WSLB Welcome Bag at orientation.  As I shopped for more WSLB Welcome Bag items at Target, I met an incredibly kind woman named Marty.

As I stood in line at the cash register with a cart full of personal care items and other goodies, the woman in front of me turns to me and asks,

“Those are a lot of goodies! Why do you have so many of the same items?”

I told her that I work for a domestic violence agency named WomenShelter of Long Beach and explained to her how we give our clients WSLB Welcome Bags upon their arrival at our Domestic Violence Resource Center in Bixby Knolls and at our emergency shelter.  After sharing this information Marty shares that she is familiar with our organization and attended one of our Domestic Violence Awareness Month Candlelight Vigils.  Marty shares how our event opened her eyes to the reality of domestic violence and made a huge impact on her life.  She thanked me for all the work that we do as she finished up her transaction.

As the cashier begins to scan the few of many items for our clients, Marty approaches me and asks,

“I don’t mean to overstep, but can I pay for these items?”

I was taken aback by her kindness and generosity, so it took me a moment to process what she was asking me.  After a brief moment, I thank her for her generosity and reassure her that it is not necessary. Marty then says,

“It is the least I can do.  Please, let me do this for you and the families you serve.”

Yes, every day, members of our community – individuals, families, businesses, etc. – provide us with the support and morale boost to continue working towards eliminating domestic violence and providing support for all victims, including women, men, children, families, and members of the LGBTQ community.  Today, Marty made a difference in the lives of many.  Marty, your kindness and generosity will always be remembered and treasured!

On behalf of WomenShelter of Long Beach and the victims/survivors that we serve, thank you so much.


– Nina Taweepong, WomenShelter of Long Beach Executive Assistant