The “Hello From The Other Side” blog series was launched in response to COVID-19 to share what young professionals think and feel about the changes happening in our community, and how they are finding ways to navigate those changes. We hope that these stories give you insight, hope, encouragement and community as we move forward, together. If you are interested in sharing your own story, please contact us here.
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What’s your name, your involvement with AYC?
Candice Honaker; Member, Board of Directors
How are you? Give us three words to describe your current state of mind.
Grateful, Worried, Hopeful
Are you currently working/WFH? How does your work day look different than it used to?
I am currently working full time from home. I previously teleworked one day a week, so I was pretty well equipped to work this way. The difference is that now my three-year-old son and husband are both here full time as well, which can present some challenges, but I’m so glad they’re home and safe.
How has your industry or position changed as a result of COVID-19?
I work in public relations, and by definition, communication is everything in my line of work. It’s been important to take advantage of phone and video conferencing to connect with our clients and with each other.
Our clients are facing challenges they’ve never seen, nor ever expected, and it’s our job to help them navigate these challenges from a communications standpoint. Thankfully, we are also able to help bring out the positive side of the work they do. We recently helped our client, St. David’s HealthCare, launch a community engagement campaign called HeroCare that allows the public to show their support for those putting their lives on the line to keep others healthy.
We also played a role in a fundraising campaign called All Together ATX (made possible by a partnership between the Austin Community Foundation and United Way for Greater Austin) which is raising funds for communities in the Austin metropolitan area impacted by COVID-19.
I feel so thankful to be able to help contribute to keeping the community informed and helping our clients focus on running their businesses by taking at least one worry off their plates.
What are you most afraid of right now?
The only thing I fear is losing someone I care about. Money isn’t everything. Going out and summer vacations can wait. I want those I love to remain safe.
What are you most optimistic about right now?
I feel so lucky to have been born and raised in a city that has always attracted innovative, intelligent people who care for others. I think we will continue to band together to flatten the curve–and shame those who don’t take part (I’m looking at you Barton Springs pic).
What is keeping you sane right now?
I think sanity is relative these days…I think we are all just doing our best. I’d have to say the ridiculous and hilarious things that come out of my son’s mouth are a daily release valve for pressure.
Do you find that you have more or less free time right now? Describe.
I have a child and (fortunately) a job, so I definitely don’t have more time, though it’s nice not to have a commute!
What are some of your favorite blogs, books or podcasts right now?
I read news and emails most of the day, so I like to fall asleep to podcasts that are soothing. I just discovered one read by LeVar Burton from Reading Rainbow! (I’m aging myself a bit there.)
Have you come across any great online resources we should know about? If so, what are they?
Another of our clients, the Downtown Austin Alliance has a great page full of resources during COVID-19.
What is the first thing you will do once the lockdown has been lifted?
Go to work. Just kidding, I’d love to visit my grandmothers who I know are missing seeing my son’s face.
What advice do you have for other young professionals in Central Texas who are feeling scared, isolated, and anxious about the future?
I would say that we are so lucky to live in this area. I think we will come out of this and eventually get back to where we were both professionally and socially. I’d also encourage everyone to reach out to friends and family. It’s been so good to have long conversations with friends that we wouldn’t have had if we were in a crowded bar or restaurant.
How can members get in touch with you?
Anyone who’d like to connect can reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.