In October of 2016, one year after starting a coaching business, I became a homeless mother of two. Although I was embarrassed and afraid, I knew I had to overcome this dreadful situation for my children. Family, friends, and social service workers humiliated me. I promised myself that, when given the opportunity, I would help others without stripping their dignity.
Upon learning that more adult students who filed “Head of Household” were returning to school to complete their education with limited assistance, I knew this was my opportunity to serve. So, in 2018, I founded Communities Promoting Reading (CPR), a non-profit organization that promotes family literacy. In August of the same year, CPR partnered with Raymour & Flanigan Furniture to host an “Adult Bookbag Drive” for students earning a General Equivalent Diploma (GED) in Brownsville, Brooklyn. The adult bookbag drive provided students with bookbags that included: notebooks, folders, pens, pencils, scientific calculators, and a copy of my book, A Farewell to Welfare: 25 Strategies to Freedom, Independence, and Prosperity. As a result of the bookbag drive, 85% of students passed the GED exams in August 2019.
Due to being homeless and many other unfortunate experiences, I have dedicated my career to advocating and motivating underrepresented and marginalized populations. As a future “helper” I believe it is important to use my work, research, and passion to improve some facet of the world. You can say I have transformed humiliation into healing.