The first-ever Assets & Opportunity National Week of Action is taking place this week! The goal for the Week of Action is to call attention to the issues of economic insecurity and inequality that too many families across this country face, while highlighting the successful solutions that create an opportunity economy in which everyone has the chance to get ahead.
We are hosting blog posts that raise awareness about the importance of financial security and highlight innovative solutions and how Head Start and Community Action programs, like Stand By Me can raise awareness and play a role in educating their clients about financial security.
Jamal and Elaine: Success in the Midst of a Troubled City
Jamal is a father who is a single parent. When he first signed up for coaching he was unemployed and homeless. His children were students at Wilmington Head Start and he feared losing custody of them because of his situation. During several coaching sessions he worked on rewriting his resume and searching for safe and affordable rental property. He is now employed at Christiana Hospital and is now renting his home. His children have since graduated the Head Start program and he continues to serve on the Policy Council as a Head Start advocate and an example to other parents.
Elaine is a grandmother who has custody of her grandson. The grandson is currently in Head Start. During her initial session she set a goal for budgeting, savings and finishing a certificate for child care certification, TECE I, that she had enrolled in previously. She also wanted to learn about her credit so she worked with her Coach to have her credit pulled and reviewed. She has since completed the course and received her certificate just before the holidays. Elaine is now planning to enroll in the TECE II course.
She is also budgeting monthly and for the month of January has been able to identify areas where she can manage her money better and save $400.00. Building a savings fund is especially important to her to help her achieve her goal to open her own child care business.
New Castle County Head Start Parent Liaisons!
In October of 2015 we launched a new Parent Liaison initiative within the New Castle County Head Start (NCCHS) Program. A Parent Liaison is selected from the Head Start parent committee and their aim is to promote, support and challenge other parents to take advantage of the coaching services by “getting involved”. Shaunna Mason is a Family Service Worker who is overseeing the Parent Liaison Program. There are 8 Head Start Centers under the New Castle County division. The Liaison does this by first becoming a customer, then becoming a spokesperson who will share their experience during parent meetings or whenever the opportunity presents itself. The Liaisons are absolutely on fire and together have already referred over 30 parents to the program.