The Monthly E-news of STEP Richmond
November 2015

Come Celebrate With Us!

We invite you to join the Jobs for Life students, mentors, friends and family to celebrate graduation on Thursday, December 3 at 6:ooPM. It will be held at Eternity Church (1900 Chamberlayne Ave). Reception to follow.

Please enjoy reading about our graduates below!

Mona Berry
Mona Berry is not only a mother, but a grandmother! She has had a long career of culinary positions, including ten years at Bottom’s Up Pizza. Mona came to Jobs for Life having been out of work for a little while. She has been an ideal student, with nearly perfect attendance, thorough homework and high engagement with the class every week. What impresses me most about Mona is her incredible work ethic that serves as an example to her family and classmates. She is also a loving, positive encouragement to her peers. She recently started working again in the kitchen at Mama J’s. Her long-term career goal is to attend culinary school.

-Debbie Edwards , Mentor
Shakena Cotman
Shakena’s personality and positive attitude have been a bright light in our Jobs for Life class and have encouraged both fellow students and champions alike. Her life is focused on her two young children, yet through JFL she has realized a critical key to anyone’s success: She is important and worth focusing  on as well.  She is energetically pursuing a new job as she strives to better herself for her whole family. Shakena has opened up about her hopes and dreams throughout our time together and has started to easily share her trust that God has a plan and purpose for her as well as a perfect job waiting for her. I am blessed by her friendship and trust that amazing things are headed her way!

-Ginger James, Mentor
Gladys Jones
Gladys is the epitome of what support, encouragement and a desire to change can do in a person’s life. Gladys is a mother to three wonderful children who found herself in a hard situation. Gladys came to JFL seeking direction with her career path and since this semester began has already began the necessary classes to reach her goals. What I admire most about Gladys is her full circle approach; she has leveraged the help she received and is giving back to her community. She reaches out and offers support and resources to help others find their paths to enriched lives. I truly appreciate that Gladys has allowed me to be part of her life and excited for her families future.

–Fiona Towner, Mentor.
Keith Patterson
Keith Patterson is a motivated musician with a big heart. He is a talented vocalist and pianist and has also spent time acting. His dream is to sign with a major recording label. Although Keith is a quiet and meek in spirit, he is most comfortable when performing in front of large crowds. Keith graduated from Fork Union Military Academy and spent 2 additional years studying at VCU. He is currently seeking employment related to music, but is motivated to work in different industries as he continues to record music and pursue his dreams of working in the music industry. I admire Keith for his kind nature and calm disposition. His passion for music and helping others is contagious. One day Keith would like to help the homeless by starting a non-profit.  

-Carter Mackey, Mentor
Shaquawn Thompson

Shaquawn Thompson is a devoted single mother of a 7-year old son, Jaden.  As a strong, motivated overcomer, Shaquawn is committed to her personal growth and success.  She has an honest perspective about her past and makes daily decisions that will produce a better life for her family.  Shaquawn is currently participating in programs designed to assist her in reaching her goals.  She pursues employment that allows her to be available for her son's development while she obtains her GED.  With her GED and CNA licensing, she will continue her career in the nursing field, passionately caring for the sick and elderly.  Her bright smile tells it all! It's been our complete joy and pleasure working with her! 

- Keesha Sims & Melita Nash, Mentors
Takeisha Tyler

Takeisha has been working hard in our Jobs for Life class to develop confidence in an effort to improve herself and get a better job.  She has overcome lots of obstacles including being rejected by her parents and living on the street as a teen, but has steadily trusted the Lord to help her.  She is just about to get her own place to live.  She has worked as a personal care assistant, assisted in a daycare facility and done custodial work.  She was the first student to get a job in the class!  Her goal is to get more education and work as a Pre-K or Kindergarten teacher.   

- Kathy Buttner, Mentor
STEP's 25th Annual Christmas Store!
Each year STEP collects donations of new, unwrapped children’s gifts with the original purchase price intact. These donations are then marked to half price or less and made available to the parents of children living in Gilpin Court and surrounding communities. The Christmas store offers parents the dignity of making a sacrifice of love for their children at an affordable price. Suggested gifts include: brown dolls, skateboards, arts and crafts, sports equipment, building blocks, electronics, toy cars and trucks, and educational toys.

Saturday, Dec. 5 from 10am to 2pm. Please drop off gifts by Wednesday, Dec. 3.

The 3rd Annual Fall Banquet was a great success and was well attended with over 200 guests and $20,705 raised! Thank you to all who attended and made the evening a fun and memorable one. We were thankful for the opportunity to share all that God has been doing in Gilpin Court through the various STEP ministries. Thank you!
Tax-Deductible Gifts!
As a 501(c)(3) all financial gifts are tax deductible. Be sure to make a donation by December 31st! Simply click on the donate button below.
Strategies To Elevate People
1900 Chamberlayne Ave, Richmond, VA 23222