Hi, my name is Hennesis Santiago. Almost 7 months ago, I gave birth to my daughter, Jazzmani, who is everything to me. My daughter has done nothing but put me on track and help me change my life for the better. Before I got pregnant I was in an unhealthy living environment, partying, hanging out with the wrong people, tangled up in gang activity, and not truly focusing on what I wanted to accomplish in life. I had dropped out of high school for personal reasons and had not made any moves to get back into school or finish my education until shortly after I gave birth to my daughter.

Throughout my pregnancy it was a constant challenge. I was on and off with the father of my child, which was tough to deal with, but I had friends that I believed were going to be there forever and help me. Well things did not work out like I wanted them to. In that time there was lots of fighting, yet again moving to and from places, and trying to figure out how I was going to better my life for my daughter and me. I knew I had to make changes to be the best mom I could be. Despite the fact I did not have a job, lots of money, a car, or a lot of support, I knew I had to make a change.

Six months into my pregnancy I was informed about the Young Parents Program and started to attend Training Resources of America. Shortly after beginning the YPP program, I passed the High School Equivalency Test HiSET), and obtained my certificate! After completing that accomplishment, I then went on to get a part-time job, which in the end wasn’t the best fit for me. I am currently actively job searching and looking for another job.

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