"Stepping Out for Hopewell" by Guest Speaker Sue Holloway

I remember the first time I met Lina Hunt.  It was about 3 years ago when we were at an event and she asked me if I would be interested in being part of the Hopewell Fashion Show as a model. Never one to shy away from the limelight I accepted having no inkling that by the time the fashion show rolled around I would need the services of Hopewell.

My lovely daughter Sarah went away to university in the US on a full volleyball scholarship and she seemed to be really happy. After gaining a little bit of weight her first semester she and her roommate started what seemed like a harmless three week diet. Within half a year this innocent weight loss program deteriorated to very serious anorexia. Sarah went from being a strong, stunning, outgoing athlete to a reclusive ghost of her former self. She lost a lot of weight.  At her lowest she weighed very little –  and she is almost 6’ tall.

Eating disorders do not just affect the one suffering from the illness. Its cruel tentacles reach out to all of those around them and we often feel so helpless. Hopewell provided us with a wealth of resources through the website. I used the resource list to find professional help, read the “friends and family” section and often went back to re-read articles.  The best thing I did was join the family support group. It was such a relief to share and learn from others who were going through similar experiences and to have expert facilitation from our group leader.

This year we attended “Stepping Out For Hopewell” as a family.  While I shared our story with the guests my husband and both our beautiful daughters modeled the fabulous fashions. Healed and healthy we were all able to enjoy the event and give back to an organization that provided an island of hope when we were in a sea of despair. Thank you to everyone who came out to support Hopewell and make sure that this essential community service continues to thrive.

The Holloway-Joy family participate in "Stepping Out for Hopewell"