When Mariah's family was homeless and she didn't know where to turn, she found Head Start and CMCA. After enrolling her three daughters in Head Start, our early childhood education program, Mariah began to work with a family success coach who helped her set the goal of completing her education. She also began volunteering in the classroom, reading to the kids, and soon realized her dream was to become a Head Start teacher. In 2019, Mariah graduated with her associates degree and started working as a Head Start assistant teacher. Today, she is a lead teacher at the Cole County Early Head Start Center.
When her children first started Head Start, the family was also homeless. So, working with her family success coach, Mariah was able to find a place for the family to live. At the time she had no money for home necessities like pots and pans. The team at her children's Head Start used emergency funds to provide these necessities. Next week, Mariah and her husband will close on their first home. In two years, Mariah moved out of homelessness and joblessness into full-time, fulfilling employment, and into being a first-time home owner. Her story is what CMCA is all about. Helping people help themselves and each other.