Written by Judy Perry, Instructor/Case Manager
Angela Morris, who recently turned 18 years old, has two young sons, one year old Michael and two year old Enrique, who has Down syndrome. You would never know “Rique” has special needs by the way Angela shows her love, pride, and caring for both her boys.
“Angie” has faced many challenges while seeking to improve herself and the lives of her children. When she came to the TRA-Worcester Young Parents Program (YPP) in August 2018, she was quite shy, reserved, and kept to herself. Nevertheless, as time went on, she became more comfortable, trusting and open. I came to understand that what first appeared to be an introverted young woman was in fact a struggling young mom attempting to hold it all together on her own. Taking care of herself since the age of 16, and now with two children, was quite a feat in itself, let alone trying to go to school and complying with various rules and regulations that would put strain and stress on any young parent trying to succeed. But with the right help and support, and her own determination, Angie has become a model of success.
She passed all five (5) of the high school equivalency tests (HiSET) in record time and at the very first attempt for each exam. Then she set her sights on TRA’s YouthBuild Nurse Assistant Training (NAT) program. While in YPP, she was recognized by the NAT staff for her excellent attendance, consistency, determination and good character, and was chosen to be one of the first round candidates for this cycle’s NAT course. As she did in YPP, Angie continues to excel, and is currently participating in phase II of the NAT Program at the American Red Cross (ARC). Upon completion, she will receive Home Health Aide and CPR/AED certifications, and will be qualified to take the MA State exam to receive her official Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) license.
Of her experience in YPP, Angela says, “It may be hard and may even get harder, but as the days go by, all you have to be is strong no matter what situation is thrown at you.” Kudos to you, Angela, we are so proud of you! Keep moving forward; only look back to see where and how far you have come and to pull someone else up when you can!
The Young Parents Program is funded by The Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance. The YouthBuild Program is funded by the U.S. Department of Labor, the Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education, and Saint-Gobain Corporation.