Edythe with her family and Kaleeah
Edythe heard about WEN from Kaleeah Euler, the Executive Director of another Kansas City nonprofit organization, Family Promise Northland. Edythe and her family were homeless because of a series of life challenges - a medical crisis with her son, car problems and the loss of her job. The family got behind in paying bills and unable to pay rent, so they were evicted. Kaleeah knew WEN was exactly what Edythe needed to help get refocused and get her confidence back.
Edythe came to WEN unsure of what to expect and almost certain that WEN would not be able to help her. When she came to orientation she let it be known that coming to WEN was going to be a challenge because of medical appointments for her son and other commitments. During her individual assessment with each staff member, she was assured that staff would work with her. WEN staff reviewed her appointment schedule and discovered that there were few conflicts and showed Edythe how with a little pre-planning she could be available for the appointments and make it through the WEN Signature program.
During her assessment with Tonia, Director of Employment and Client Services, Edythe shared that she had an Associate in Medical Assisting and that she wanted to be a phlebotomist. Tonia suggested that she contact the Community Blood Center to see if they had any openings. The next week after completing a career exploration profile Edythe shared with the women in her class that she wanted to be a phlebotomist. This time she was told by Lynnette, who was facilitating the session, that she should look at the Community Blood Center website.
By then she decided since she had heard it twice she should follow through. Over Thanksgiving weekend Edythe applied to the Community Blood Center and got a response immediately. When she came to WEN on Monday she proudly announced to the class that she was going to an interview at the Community Blood Center. At the interview, she confidently talked about her skills and the importance of helping people feel at ease in medical settings and procedures. The next day she talked about how successful she was in the interview. The most exciting part was that as she headed home, she received a call offering her the position. Edythe accepted the position and started work as a phlebotomist the week after she completed the training.
When asked what was her most important takeaway she said gaining her self-esteem and self-confidence and knowing how to properly search for, apply and interview for employment. From her WEN experience, she appreciates all the knowledge, strength and wisdom that was shared by the great staff and volunteers.
Edythe with her elf - Ms. Lynnette!