Independence brings out the best in one mom

A few years ago, Shelley, a single mother of three, was homeless, unemployed and eight months into recovery from chemical dependency. She says she had hit “rock bottom” and was afraid of losing public assistance. A year after completing treatment, she was sober and lived in a shelter with her three children. That’s when her priorities became clear; she needed to find housing, she needed to stay with her children and she needed a job. She came to Goodwill/Easter Seals Minnesota for help.

“My kids weren’t having the same childhood I did. I needed to do something. I needed to get my act together and I needed to do it quickly.” After completing an intake process, where her skill set was assessed and her work experience and interests were noted, Shelley chose to enroll in Goodwill/Easter Seals’ Bank and Finance Skills Training. “One of the things that impressed me about the Goodwill/Easter Seals’ training program [was] I was able to get it done in a 6-week period.”

Bank and Finance Skills Training is held in the Midway Office of U.S. Bank. Trainees experience a true banking environment which includes learning to work at a mock teller station. Shelley was the trainee who greeted all bank employees at the beginning and end of every day. She worked to get to know the people there and absorbed as much information about the banking industry as she could find, including taking advantage of mock interviews.

Thanks to perseverance, patience and her outgoing personality, Shelley has completely turned her life around. After graduating from the Bank and Financial Operations Skills Training, she found a job as a teller at U.S. Bank, which enabled her to secure permanent housing and support herself and her three children. Shelley is an advocate for Goodwill/Easter Seals and has referred many people to our programs.

“I believe in this program. I believe in the people that are out there teaching us and that are helping us to be productive members of society, because I know the struggles.”

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