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  • Writer's pictureErica Ward Cherry, MSW

Success Story - How Dorothy Prioritized Education to Create a Sustainable Future

The Path to Homelessness

Dorothy and her two children entered Family Promise in November 2021. The family was evicted from their home of five years after Dorothy lost her job. Dorothy found a part time job in a healthcare position but she wasn't earning enough to sustain housing. The family bounced around from house-to-house prior to entering shelter.

Creating a Sustainable Plan for Independence

During the intake process, Dorothy mentioned that she really wanted to go to school to earn a degree in a healthcare profession. School enrollment became a goal on her stability plan and within two weeks, Dorothy was enrolled. Dorothy was excited about school but knew that as a single mother, she would have to balance school, work and family. Dorothy worried that if she began working full time she would not be able to finish school - obtaining a degree was so important to Dorothy. Dorothy enrolled in United Way's Financial Empowerment Center and they began helping her create a budget, improve her credit score and file taxes.

The Search for Affordable Housing

Dorothy diligently sought affordable housing but, because of the inflated housing market, Dorothy was having difficulty finding something adequate. Dorothy really enjoyed her job but she was worried she would have to find a full time opportunity. Dorothy communicated with her employer and because of her positive work ethic, her company promoted her to a full time position with flexibility to work around her school schedule. Dorothy continued to seek housing and suddenly, she was approved for two different housing opportunities - both affordable. Dorothy was ecstatic!

Set Up for a Successful Future

Dorothy mentioned in her exit interview that she felt proud and was finally excited for the future. Dorothy left the program but continues to contact us on occasion. Dorothy is still working full time and expects to graduate in August, 2023.

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