Green Means “Go”

Posted on by Jerry

help wanted sign“Well Tanya, it looks like you have used up all of your hours for education. You will have to do something else to be able to continue to receive TANF.”

I heard that sentence on August 1, 2013. That sentence changed my life forever. I remember looking down at my daughter as a feeling of hopelessness swept over me. This can’t be it! I have to do better than this for my baby girl.

Someone had given me a pamphlet for something called Career Path Services. I decided I would only do this until I found something better, but little did  I know I was already heading to something greater. That following week, I met with my Joyann Boldt, a practitioner at Career Path Services.  She asked me the tough questions: what are my barriers, what are my goals, what kind of job do you see yourself in? Those questions were the pillars to rebuilding my life. With those questions, I identified the self-sabotaging cycle I put myself through and how to stop it.  I asked myself what I wanted to do , not what I could do to just ‘get by’. I did some soul searching and remembered my longing to work for a non-profit organization helping others.

After I told Joyann of my dream, I was amazed that one person could be so determined to help me succeed even when I didn’t believe in myself.  She worked hard to find me a place I would love. She asked me about my work experience, which was minimal, and was able to find me a spot at one of the best places on earth. The week following our conversation, I interviewed at Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission, for a front desk internship position.

During the internship, you are expected to look for jobs and turn in your job search logs at the end of the week. I repeated this process for six months and found two jobs that I quit just as quickly as I began. My biggest struggle was believing in myself.  I had to learn to believe that I could achieve anything I set myself to; that there is no star too high to reach.

While at the front desk, I was blessed with a beautiful woman by the name of Ms. Roslyn.  She is a key factor who ministered to me and spoke to that part of me with the clipped wings, the part of me that no longer believed.

At the end of my internship, I left the Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission to work as a dietary aid for a retirement home. Determined to get a job at the Union Gospel Mission, I kept a close eye out for job openings there.

In April 2014, the chance I had been waiting for became available: UGM was hiring a part-time accounts payable clerk!  Joyann had showed me how to prepare a resume and write a cover letter that would not only display my skills, but sell them as wel.  During my front desk internship, I had learned data entry from another mentor, Erika Drake.  Each of these ladies were the starting players on my dream team, a team that shares responsibility for my success today.

Today, I have my own office at the Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission as a full time accounts payable clerk. Today, I have a great benefits package, paid vacation time, and a stable position that I love! I can proudly say I no longer qualify for TANF.  I have my own apartment, a car, and am now married to a wonderful man as well as a mother of two. My daughters can look up to me and have anything their hearts desires.

It all started with a sentence.  The sentence that changed my life forever. Thank you Career Path Services!

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