Cathy Repola: I'm MPTF
Cathy Repola is a regular at MPTF volunteer events, and those who attend know she's also an avid supporter. Keep reading to get a glimpse of Cathy's MPTF story and find out why she's proud to say, "I'm MPTF."
Cathy Repola, the Western Executive Director of IATSE Local 700, knows about giving back. For years she’s been an MPTF volunteer and donor as well as a familiar face among volunteers at MPTF events. Cathy’s more than just a super volunteer, however. She also understands firsthand the importance of MPTF’s services.
Volunteering & Giving Back
Cathy’s involvement with MPTF began during her 15-year tenure at Local 700. During this time she was asked to join an IATSE advisory committee for MPTF.
“As I sat in that committee, I learned more about social and financial services and all the other amazing MPTF programs,” says Cathy. “It was awesome that there was an organization doing all these things. And that’s when my relationship became more than professional, but personal.”
Cathy first started giving back through MPTF’s volunteer programs such as Home Safe Home, where she found the experience of helping improve the safety in a person’s home exceptionally gratifying.
“It was one of those experiences where you realize that you’re giving your time and some energy, but you get even more in return from the experience of helping,” she says. “At that moment, I was hooked.”
Since then, Cathy has helped build the Segal Family Dog Park, plant gardens, and painted plenty of houses. “I really enjoy the volunteer thing,” she says. But she doesn’t stop there. She’s also a member of MPTF’s Circle of Friends and helps to organize and manage IATSE and MPTF fundraisers such as Day at the Races and Heartbeat of Hollywood Lite.
Making The Call: Experiencing MPTF’s Services Firsthand
For Cathy, working with MPTF has made for an exciting journey. But she also experienced the services MPTF provides firsthand when her 85-year-old mother fell and broke her leg. That’s when Cathy found herself on the recipient side of MPTF services.
“It was terrifying for everyone,” Cathy says. “She needed surgery and rehab, and there were so many scenarios about what could happen — it was impossible not to feel completely overwhelmed.”
Cathy was connected with a social worker who helped get her “out of panic mode” with answers about what to expect and where to go for help. She was pointed towards the best rehab facilities, then put in contact with a nurse who was able to check on her mom’s progress and report back regularly to the family.
All the attention helped Cathy stay calm while her mom recovered. And a few years later, her mom moved into the Ray and Fran Stark Villa on The Wasserman Campus, where Cathy and three of her California-residing siblings, two of whom also work in the industry, visit her regularly.
“MPTF has benefitted all of us and given us peace of mind. We know her needs are being met, and it was a wise choice to secure her future and her overall well-being,” says Cathy.
“The More You Do, the More You Want To Be Involved”
Cathy is an avid supporter of MPTF and has embodied the spirit of the organization.
As a volunteer and donor, she has always helped connect fellow industry members to MPTF and is one of the first ones in line when the organization needs volunteers. For her, giving back just makes sense.
“The more you do for your industry peers, the more you get involved in the MPTF world, the more you want to be involved,” says Cathy. “It just feels so gratifying to be a part of MPTF, and soon you can’t stop.”
Read Cathy's blog story about her mother at Deal With It: Today.
For more information about volunteering with MPTF, or to sign up, visit our Volunteer section.
About MPTF: For over 95 years, MPTF (Motion Picture & Television Fund) has served as a safety net for entertainment industry members. As a charitable organization, MPTF provides programs and services essential to the well-being of individuals, their families and the industry community at large, and is a recognized leader in Senior Care and Palliative Care services. MPTF is supported by the generosity of fellow entertainment workers, and corporate donors united by a common thread of Hollywood Helping Hollywood – “We Take Care of Our Own”. For more information visit www.MPTF.com and donate at www.mptf.com/donate.