Beyond Emancipation

Angelica: Motivated & Determined

Angelica decided she wanted to work with children when she was still just a teen. She had always loved helping other children even as a child herself.

“I went into foster care when I was 11,” Angelica says, “and I noticed some of the other kids in the foster home needed more help so I would do their hair and help them get ready for school.”

So when Angelica, now 25, enrolled at Merritt College and B:E’s b2b college support program there, she went straight to the Child Development Department. After she earns her degree, she plans to open a day care.

“Not just any day care,” Angelica adds. “I want to open an overnight day care for parents like me that work at night. I’m also going to have a center for children with special needs.”

In addition to b2b, Angelica has taken advantage of B:E’s many other programs.

“B:E helps you learn what you need to be self-sufficient,” Angelica says. “It takes dedication to take advantage of all of it but these are opportunities that a lot of people don’t get: housing, jobs, support, grants for college, even therapy.”

One of the most important things B:E has provided her is emotional support during a rough time when she dropped out of school and was struggling to leave an abusive relationship while raising her child on her own.

“DeShauna and Tempest encouraged me when I was down,” Angelica says. “It took a lot of motivation and a lot of dedication, and they knew what to say to help me get there. They told me B:E was going to do their part but I would have to do my part, too.”

During those hard days, Angelica says she often went to B:E “for a break.”

“If you need to get away from everything,” she says, “B:E even has rooms you can sit in and just relax for an hour. I used to do that, and it really helped when I was stressed.”

Now Angelica says although it’s a lot of work to raise her three sons ages 4, 2, and 5 months while going to school and holding down a job, she is moving steadily toward her goals.Angelica with her 3 kids!

“It can be a struggle” she says, “but looking at those little faces in the morning gives me the motivation to get up and do what I need to do.”

And right now, Angelica says, doing well in college is what she needs to do because “education is the key to success.”

Asked what she likes to do in her free time, Angelica says, “To be honest, I don’t have any free time right now. My kids are my joy. When I’m not in school or at work, it’s all about my kids.”

She laughs as she adds, “Maybe when I’m 40 I’ll have time for a vacation.”

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