I am Dave Derraugh. That is only a name, let me tell you about what is behind my name.
My professional history is primarily one of self employment – in roles of caring and service to others – My professional history, is very much also my personal history. My choice in being self employed and in areas of caring, empathy and flexibility were directly motivated and inspired by my choice, desire and need to focus on my daughter, Cristina, who was born 29 years ago with Down Syndrome. Before Cristina was even born, we knew that she had major health problems. Cristina had surgery when she was 2 days old for a blocked intestine and a series of surgeries to repair the blockage subsequent to that. If that wasn’t enough, she went into septic shock from an infection in her incision, after the first one, and was on life support for longer then I want to remember. Very emotional and difficult, but proved that Cristina is a fighter. That strength carried Cristina through 2 open heart surgeries in her life as well, at 9 months and 9 years and a touch and go battle with bilateral pneumonia 3 years ago.All of this motivated me to go into Health Care to give back love to the world that had been given to us. I tried working in a nursing home but it wasn’t what I needed schedule wise, family wise or emotionally. I started into private care and never looked back for 8 years. I developed a professional and personal rapport and trust with my clients, my main one being an individual with Parkinsons, whom I cared for 1 on 1 for over 7 years until he passed away. I have continued part time caregiving off and on since then as it comes naturally to me.
I care about people, I care about their personal needs - emotionally, physically, psychologically, entirely. Empathy and Compassion are important to me and part of who I am. I am other centered. This has always been in my makeup but has primarily been a result of advocating for and with Cristina over the years. As a divorced, single Dad the choice to be self-employed with a flexible schedule was as important to me as it was to Cristina, sometimes even more so. This became even more important when Cristina moved in with me full time 4 years ago after being physically assaulted in her Moms’ home. My focus was on Cristina and a balance in life, which I successfully found – and still have today. I am very thankful for that, truly blessed.
It has had it’s challenges and affects and hasn’t been easy at times, but I wouldn’t change a thing in how I have done or approached things. I have learned and developed a desire, will and strength for advocacy, political will and for social change.
When I saw Compassionate Kids on a Facebook page, I was immediately ignited with passion for it! It has everything that I believe in and everything that I stand for personally – and in a professional endeavour. Caring for the future of our children in so many important areas to me! With compassion, with kindness, with community and with the inspiration to change and grow their young minds and hearts in a nurturing, loving, safe atmosphere! The environment, caring for our animal friends, loving and caring for ourselves, the power of natural foods. Important programs and important aspects of my family and advocacy life.
Compassionate Kids is personal, is heartfelt, is real and is lovingly inspirational. Imagine our children changing the world!