Hi Friends!

I’m excited to be writing my first blog post for my new (ish!) website, and I thought a bit more about me would be a good place to start 😀

On my personal facebook I describe myself as: *Perfectly imperfect *Christian *Feminist *Neurodivergent *LGBTQI+ Ally *Entrepreneur. 

I can often be found with my nose in a good book and a cuppa in my hand. The theatre is one of my happy places, as in being out in nature – both of those with friends or on my own.

People are my passion – I love getting to know new people, and learning more about all the amazing humans that are in my life, both professionally and personally. Everyone has a story worth hearing, and experiences and passions that we can build authentic connections through.

My own life experiences – good and bad – have been the things that have driven this passion. They’ve helped me grow in my ability to provide spaces where people can discover their value and worth, and empower them to do the same for the people they are caring for, working with and supporting. 

I have a loving family, wonderful, supportive friends, and have lots of experience of incredible, empowering communities. But I have also experienced bullying both at school and in the workplace, and was also in an abusive marriage within a faith community that was also abusive. I know what it’s like to feel as though you are utterly alone and find your self-esteem not just on the floor, but crashing right through to the basement below. My own journey through these things (finding my voice through good community, genuine friendships, therapy and a bit of sheer determination when I could manage it) are the things that make me want to see others experience the truth that they have value and worth.

I love being in community – I absolutely believe that we are built for connection in a whole plethora of ways. I love creativity, deep conversations, sunsets, the privilege of hearing people’s stories, chocolate, hugs, lots of laughter, my rescue cat Molly and afternoon naps!

I am learning to love my imperfections (of which there are many lol!) and embrace my neurodiversity without shame and even celebrate these as the things that make me unique. I am discovering that, as I do that, I can create safe spaces that invite others to do the same – and that leads to authentic connection, which is at the heart of our shared humanity.

Why Safeguarding?

THIS is why I work in safeguarding. You can’t discover and know your value and worth if you are not safe, if you are being abused and hurt.

I am passionate about people realising that they deserve to be safe, that they have a voice, that they matter and have purpose, and the right to enjoy their life. I have been there – not safe, had my voice silenced, my worth shattered – and know from my own experiences the life-changing effect being seen, recognised, supported and empowered has in a person’s life. Seeing that lightbulb moment in a person’s eyes, the relief of realising they are being heard (and I mean really heard) and that their opinions, experience and feelings are valid – those are moments that I love.

I see the difference it makes when people have the knowledge to spot the things that are harmful and are able to address problems – either for themselves or for the people around them. Knowledge is power, but not just tick-box knowledge, real understanding that empowers people to trust themselves, make healthy decisions or seek out help if they need it.

That’s why I love the work I do – and I hope that you feel encouraged and inspired to realise that you matter and that you can make a difference to the people around you! For now, I just want to say thank you for reading this, and welcome to my world of safeguarding with a difference!

If there’s a subject you’d like me to consider covering or have any questions, do comment below or drop me a line at gabriella@gabriellarusso.co.uk – I’d love to hear from you!

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