Individual Success Story
“That’s why I really want others to hear that this place—Fresh Start—can help them to learn new skills and to succeed, to be a professional.”
Angela* has a purpose in telling her story—to let others know that Fresh Start supports women from all backgrounds and cultures. Being an immigrant, she knows all the barriers immigrants must overcome and wants to help other women in Arizona who are in the same position she was in.
Without first-hand experience, it can be difficult to imagine the numerous barriers that immigrants must overcome in their new country. Things others may take for granted: learning a new language and customs, finding community and housing, accessing resources and education, obtaining transportation and employment. Often, all the accomplishments she has already achieved in her home country are written off, and she must begin completely anew. This immigrant experience was no different for Angela.
“Just speaking English, it seems that easy, but it’s not that easy,” Angela explained. “Especially when you know that even as a child, it takes a long time (to learn a language). In addition, you feel afraid to be in a new country where you don’t know anything, nothing.”
Angela’s life changed when she found Fresh Start in 2018 and immediately connected with a social worker to discuss her struggles and goals. She took courses in all areas of the Impact Program: Computer Literacy, Financial Management, Family Stability, Education and Training, Career Services, and Health & Well-being. She joined support and self-empowerment groups, and she attended workshops in Personal Development. She recently earned a scholarship to attend the Dream Builder course.
Now, Angela tells her story to let others know that Fresh Start is here to support them achieve their dreams just like her. She knows all the barriers immigrants must overcome and she wants to empower other women to overcome their fear and just start their journey forward.
“That’s why I really want others to hear that this place—Fresh Start—can help them to learn new skills and to succeed, to be a professional,” Angela said. “I see how they (women immigrants) stumble, and they don’t know where to go.”
“I try to be for them, the coach or the model, so they can see what I’m going through and that I’m able to succeed. So, if I can do it, they can do it,” she continued.
Angela wants immigrant families to understand that at Fresh Start they can feel safe and secure as they take steps towards better careers while overcoming any fears they may have along the way.
“That’s why I’m here, to let them know, in those moments they are afraid to come, just to come,” Angela shared with a smile.
Angela’s achievements in the face of enormous obstacles are a testament to her own resilience and perseverance. Fresh Start is honored to be part of her story by supporting her while she became the hero of her own story. Now Angela has come full circle to give that hope, confidence, and strength to other immigrant women following in her footsteps.