Steadfast. Wise. Counsellor. Rap artist? These are the words that clients, staff and volunteers use to describe Dr. Dennis Kaufman who just retired after serving at BsideU for Life for 16 years. Dr. K, or Doc to those who know him, has been a trusted pastor and counsellor primarily to clients, but also to the staff at BsideU. He joined the ministry in 2005, and was part of the core team that planned for and opened Necole’s Place in 2006, the prior name of our life skills division that serves our pregnancy center clients. There he served as Director of Counseling and wore many hats.
At first, clients were a bit closed in their interactions with him, but they quickly learned that the man who seems reserved at first, truly cared for each of them, and listened and counseled with grace and godly wisdom. As they got to know him, he became a father figure in many clients’ lives where so often they didn’t have a father present. As an example, a client who had attended Life Skills for a few years experienced the loss of her grandmother, and the first person she went to was Dr. K.
In additional to counseling and acting as the ministry pastor, Dr. K taught many Life Skills classes, including parenting, anger & stress management, leadership group, and individual & group counselling. It was readily apparent in those classes that the clients had a great respect for him, and while he was firm and disciplined in the approach to learning, he also brought a great sense of humor. On special occasions, Dr. K would compose and perform a rap, complete with a ball cap turned to the side, much to the delight of our clients and staff.
One of his focuses throughout his service was to the men in our clients’ lives. He led many men’s encouragement and bible study groups, challenging and building them up in God’s design and plan for the family. He conducted both premarital and marriage counseling, and performed nine wedding ceremonies for clients over the years.
A consistent friend and encourager, Dr. K built lasting relationships during his time with us. We had a retirement party to celebrate him, and many previous clients came to share what he’s meant to them and the impact he’s had on their lives. A tangible testimony to the lasting legacy left by a life poured out for Kingdom work. Retirement means that he’ll have more time to focus on writing and spending time with his family, but we hope Dr. K will continue to check in on us, and may even have some more raps up his sleeve.