When Kenyatta Moore heard about Getting Ahead she was in the middle of what she describes as a “perfect storm.” The mother of two from Waxhaw was full-time caregiver for her mother, taking college courses, helping her daughter with autism complete virtual school and she had just lost her customer service job.
“I had more bills and less money. It was just like ‘what do I do? I was trying to get by, I just didn’t know what else to do. What was I doing wrong?’”
As the focus group sessions moved along and she started investigating poverty in her own life and Union County, Kenyatta realized that her situation wasn’t entirely her fault. That knowledge itself was empowering. It helped identify what she could do to change her situation, and how she could work together with others to change in our community.
“Living in poverty, there are skills you develop that most people don’t have, she said. “Getting ahead is not always about money. I gained so much just in resources and social capital that has led to being able to have more money in my pocket or budgeting my money better.Getting Ahead gives you this empowerment. I realized that I do have something to offer when I thought I didn’t.”
Almost a year later, Kenyatta is a Getting Ahead facilitator helping others share resources, encouragement and explore what it’s like to live in poverty in Union County. Kenyatta and her children were homeless just a few years ago following a divorce and she says those experiences have helped her be able to better relate to others in the class.