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Workforce Central

Meet Jessica

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Workforce Challenge

Jessica was homeless with two children, ages 6 and 3. She was living in a tent though occasionally was able to use her TANF funds to get a motel room, allowing her sons to bathe in hot water. Due to her transient living situation, she homeschooled her children and searched for employment with no success. In addition, during a visit to the ER, she was diagnosed with Grave’s Disease, an auto immune disorder that needed to be treated immediately.

Workforce Solution

While searching for a job, a banner for a Homeless resource event caught Jessica’s eye. At the event, staff referred her to Linette Davis of WorkForce Central, who was working in the Building Changes Housing and Employment Navigator Project. This program is a unique partnership of housing providers, DSHS and WorkForce Central, developed to assist homeless families with education and job training that leads to employment and economic stability; thereby, preventing a return to homelessness.

Within the program, Linette along with partner staff within Department of Social and Health Services and Pierce County Housing Authority assisted Jessica in building a support network to address her needs for medical deferral, housing and training.

Outcomes & Benefits

With stable housing, a medical exemption and Linette’s motivation and mentoring, Jessica was able to focus and obtain her High School diploma and go on to earn an Associates Degree as a Medical Office Professional, with 5 certifications.

Jessica was a panel presenter at US Rep. Derek Kilmer’s Women’s Economic Advancement Event, where she shared her story. Afterwards, Jessica stated “I knew if I had the chance, I could make a better life for myself and family, but I didn’t expect to inspire anyone.”

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