Amber Finds Her Way Out
“The support I’ve received from my FSET and W-2 workers…has been priceless,” Amber tells us. She’s made four big breakthroughs over the past month. She graduated from FSC’s Office Foundations Training, found stable housing, owns a car that works, and graduated from the first step of Circles Green Bay. For Amber, it all came down to finding people she could rely upon to pull her from a “shaky living situation” onto stable ground. Once there, she started taking small steps toward her dreams.
“I was looking for a place to fit in. Not just in the workplace, but truly in life in general,” says Amber. Her family needed her, but without a home, car, or job, “I was being crushed under the weight of so many people depending on me for their own basic needs.”
Together with FSC and Circles, Amber is learning the skills she needs to not only find a job but to “become employable.” She’s learned how to budget both her time and money so she can do more with less. Training with FSC has helped her polish her resume and learn the skills she needs to find a solid career. Meanwhile, joining Circles fulfilled a heartfelt “desire for community and support from other people that share my struggles and understand my journey.” She says that she feels more accountable for her choices now, is motivated to change, and also feels “prepared to adapt to the changes I expect to continue to come.”
“The hardest thing I had to face was the full acknowledgement that I am the captain of my ship… and it is 100% my responsibility to find a way out,” says Amber. “With the support of an amazing team behind me, one step at a time, I found my footing.” Amber invited Emily to attend her Circles graduation, where Amber gave a speech about her progress so far. Amber is on the next step in the program and hopes to enroll in courses that enable her to “pursue a voice in victim advocacy, whether through volunteer work or a career. I will keep moving forward even if that means tiny steps full of trips and falls, and I will be able to be fully self-sufficient in the next couple of years.”
Congratulations, Amber! We can’t wait to see your next graduation!
Makhia’s Expecting Great Things
Imagine studying for your finals with one youngster at home and another on the way. That would be enough to make anyone gulp, but when Makhia learned that she was expecting again, she knew that it was now or never. She signed up for Wisconsin Works and FSET to earn the diploma she needed to strengthen her family, and this summer she’s done it!
Makhia realized that earning her HSED was the first step toward finding a job that could support her growing family. She had previously worked in customer service and healthcare, but her pregnancy made it difficult to find work in those fields. “I still had a child at home who had needs,” she tells us. “That was a HUGE challenge when I didn’t have a job.”
Wisconsin Works helped Makhia with cash assistance throughout her work search, but to get her enrolled in school, her case manager introduced her to the FSET team. Through them, Makhia immediately enrolled in Blackhawk Technical College‘s GED Fast Track program. As she passed one test after another, her anticipation turned into excitement. She eagerly reported each score to her case manager. By the last test, “I was on pins and needles waiting for the results!” she says.
Makhia plans to put her new HSED to use as soon as possible to find a great career. “None of this would have really been possible without the W-2 and FSET programs!” she says. “ W-2 helped me continue to pay my bills and take care of my daughter, while FSET helped me study for the HSED and tests!”
Great job, Makhia! We’re excited to see where you go from here!