If there was a dictionary definition for a person with a true servant’s heart, who is constantly volunteering time out of her jam-packed schedule to help others, you would see a photo of miss Faith Fountain next to it! Faith is a native Chicagoan but moved to the area to attend Kentucky Christian University in 2006 and moved to Ashland in 2011. She received her Bachelors in University Studies with a minor in Counseling Psychology, and received her Master’s Degree in Clinical Mental Health last year. She is currently working at Pathways as a therapist in their KSTEP program, and is also over the Partial Hospitalization program.
In and of itself, being a therapist is mentally exhausting for those in the profession. Listening to the struggles others go through and having to prepare treatment plans requires a great deal of emotional effort. Faith works with those struggling with addiction and provides guidance through their experiences and through recovery.
“Sometimes I have to take a step back because I get so consumed by the profession of helping,” Faith said.
In recent weeks, nearly a dozen young adults have passed from drug overdoses. With addiction continuing to tighten its grip in eastern Kentucky, Faith has her work cut out for her nearly every day. However, being able to give people the tools to pull themselves out of rock bottom is incredibly rewarding.
“The most rewarding part about being a counselor is giving my clients affirmations and telling them they are worthy,” she said. “I can empower them so they are able to do the same for others.”
It is not just what Faith does at work that makes her the perfect candidate for hero of the week, it is what she does outside of work too.
If you know Faith, you know she rarely takes time for herself. If she has a minute of free time, it is spent volunteering and doing all she can for others. She regularly volunteers with the Salvation Army, is an active member of Build Ashland, Ashland For Change, and helps out The Mill Café & Bakery owner Mikal Miller by waiting tables and other restaurant duties.
“Faith is always working behind the scenes and without praise,” Ashland For Change President Marie Troxler said. “Even if it is just a kind word or smile, she is always there to help her community, a friend, or a stranger. She is always gifting items to those she loves and deserves to be recognized for all the good she does in the community!”
The Mill owner Mikal Miller echoed Troxler’s sentiments.
“My favorite part about having Faith work with us is that it never feels like we are working. Her positive nature and upbeat attitude make even the most stressful tasks a little bit easier,” Miller said.
“She works a full-time job and happily donates her time helping out a local business trying to gain a foothold in the community.”
Cesiah Blanton, a close friend of Faith’s, says that her presence always ignites joy.
“Faith touches the lives of so many. Whether it is through singing, acts of kindness, making someone laugh, or her delicious cooking, she spreads happiness wherever she goes,” Blanton said. “Professionally, she is always making a difference in her client’s lives by encouraging them to continue on the road through sobriety and encourages them when they are at their lowest.”
“It takes great strength and an even greater heart to shine such light when there is darkness. Keep shining Faith!” Blanton added.
It is quite clear that Faith does not know a stranger. She can make anybody laugh with her contagious personality and boisterous laugh. She is Ms Ashland for a reason! Faith is a true asset to the Ashland community and is loved by so many.