Sean came to the US seven years ago. Last summer, he was struggling and came to the Lawrence Family Support Center seeking rental assistance. His income from a food delivery company was not enough to make ends meet every month.

In addition to helping him with his rent, the Family Support Center Case Manager referred him to our Family Financial Transformations program so he could learn more about budgeting and set financial goals for his future.

Sean knew he would need to find a more stable job. Sean began exploring the idea of enrolling in an educational training program, so his Financial Empowerment Specialist referred to him the St. Rita program. Though his life wasn’t quite stable enough for Saint Rita, he continued to work with his Financial Empowerment Specialist and his Workforce Specialist.

Sean was encouraged and motivated to start taking his finances and employment seriously. Sean quickly obtained a job as an interpreter where he was making $18/hr. Sean worked with his Financial Empowerment Specialist to create a budget that would help him remain stable if he started a training program. Sean diligently tracked his expected expenses and his actual expenses each month.

Within three months, Sean was stable enough to enroll in a 24-week Data Analytics program affiliated with the University of Kansas. While enrolled in school, Sean experienced significant ups and downs but always communicated with his Financial Empowerment and Workforce Specialists and met with them monthly for case management.

One of Sean’s successes is that he was able to prioritize his mental health both in his life and in his budget, ensuring he could receive the help he needed and was proud to be able to pay for the service.

Sean completed the Family Financial Transformations Education Series that focuses on financial basics such as goal setting, saving, and understanding credit. Sean also completed a work ethics course called Bring Your A’ Game, where he learned the basics of soft workplace skills.

Although he was familiar with these skills, he reported that the course was helpful to understand the employer’s point of view better. Once Sean completed the Data Analytic program, he began working with his workforce specialist to develop a resume and cover letter. In December, Sean applied for a position with the State of Kansas.

Sean started his new job in January 2022 and reports that it’s going well. He gathers data and researches recidivism rates for individuals who complete educational/training programs while incarcerated in his new position.

Sean enjoys his new job, and in an email to his two CCNEK case managers, Sean stated, “Since I have been in the US, I never made more than 25K a year, it was always between 18k and 24k, now I will start making 53K with good health insurance, 401K, It’s just amazing.”

Sean not only has the tools to be successful in his new job, but he also has the skills to prioritize his spending and save for the future.