Monday, January 11, 2016

Giving Mom a Second Chance


Everything went from bad to worse for Anne Smith in 2013. She was evicted from her apartment due to underemployment as a temp. She was living in a motel with her son. She had a excruciating injury after boiling water spilled on her. She was a victim of identity theft and had all her funds stolen.
               
Fortunately, Anne’s temp agency referred her to an administrative assistant job at the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Council of Los Angeles’s headquarters. “Being at the Society changed everything for me,” she said. “I think many folks would look at someone like me and say, ‘I don’t want to deal with this,’ but (the Society’s) executive director, David Fields is the opposite. If there were any issues, they worked with me. They helped me. They took their roles as Vincentians seriously.”
               
Vincentian Services director, Susana Santana, helped Smith procure business clothing through the Society’s free clothes distribution center.  Human Resources Director, Nancy Sinclair, helped Smith find a safe room to rent, avoiding scams. Public Relations Director, Chris Sariego, boosted Smith’s self-esteem by praising her completed assignments. “I had zero self-esteem when I started,” said Smith. “I became a professionally-dressed and polished woman with a sense of well-being.”

               
Smith carried this confidence into a job interview at a hospital. She was hired with a fine salary and benefits, a great help now that her son is in college. “I’m pinching myself!” said Anne. “I just can’t believe the change! I am at a great place, and I think if it hadn’t been for the Society that none of this would’ve happened to me.”

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