Catrina Roebuck is always ready to take on more, but even now, she definitely has a very full schedule.
Working evenings as a certified nursing assistant, she is also attending school to become a licensed practical nurse in pursuit of her goal, which is to eventually become
a registered nurse.
The difference between today and even a few months ago is notable. Until May, Catrina was homeless, either living in her car or, later, places like Gillis House. She also fought her own demons, but today it’s obvious she is winning.
“I’m going to get there,” she promises. “I’m going to keep working and get better.”
Most of her problems began several years ago when she provided billing and coding for
a large area hospital. She especially enjoyed “going the extra mile” in customer care and services, interacting with patients and families. But when a major corporation bought the hospital, they laid off large numbers of employees, including Catrina. The job market offered no help.
“About all you could find was work for temp agencies, but that’s just lots of short-term jobs,” she recalled. “I’d go work for three days, and they would let me go because I was from an agency. So I’d try another place. Then the agency job went.”
During all this time, Catrina kept working to gain a stronger foothold, but she admitted that at the time it was hard. “I did cry once,” she admits, “but I kept trying.”
A big break came when she was introduced to Metro Lutheran Ministry while at Gillis House. The best connection may have been MLM’s Learning to Earning job skills program, led by Jacob Bosch.
“He got a list of possible jobs and even supplied gas money so I could get to interviews,” she recalled. “Whenever I needed something, he was there.”
MLM also arranged for a small apartment that included basic furniture and supplies.
“It’s pretty cozy,” she admits, “but it’s home, and I love it.”
Catrina knows she still has work to do but promises to share the benefits she’s received. “I want to share what I’ve learned,” she explained. “I now think I’m where I can help others.”
Most of all, she plans to keep working, including her work to gain more training. “I’m just determined to stay on my feet. I’m going to get more education and better work.
If anyone asks me, I’m getting there!”
“I did cry once,” she admits, “but I kept trying.”
Questions? Contact Scott Cooper at 816.931.0027 or ScottCooper@mlmkc.org.
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