It all started when we met Rachelle the end of August, actually through a supporter of Encompass Ministries who trusted us with the needs of her friend. Rachelle didn’t need assistance from the food pantry, but she sure needed help getting a job… fast!

We quickly learned that she and her husband had previously separated and that she moved out of state to start over again.  After healing time had passed, she and her husband decided to make every effort to restore their marriage. Very brave, very bold, very vulnerable. Rachelle took the plunge and moved back to Georgia, saying good-bye to her new life and friends.

The “re-honeymoon phase” was shortened when the realization happened when her husband’s income just wasn’t enough to support them both… hence, the urgency.  Car payments and credit card debt has a way to catch up with people.

Rachelle has the back-office skills necessary for the banking and insurance industries in which she had built a career.  She sent out many, many resumes when applying for a job, online.  For weeks, there were very few interviews.  Most of the responses were automatic emails expressing disappointing news – she wasn’t going to be considered for the job – and hollow words of encouragement for her success for other potential positions in another organization.

The first step for Encompass to help Rachelle was to take a look at what she had done so far in her job search.  Typically, we work on tightening up the resume first.  However, with Rachelle, she had some new interviews already lined up. Because the last few didn’t go well, this was the area to focus on.

Her confidence had bottomed out. In the past, she had easily landed whatever job she had applied for.  This was a different experience; she was being turned down repeatedly!

To get someone ready for an interview takes a lot of time and preparation. Rachelle’s attitude was awesome… very teachable. Everything that Faith (our stability coach) suggested, Rachelle took notes and adapted to her interview pitch. She was so appreciative of all that she was being taught. She regained her confidence when she knew how to answer some tough questions.

Looking back at her answers, they straddled an unhappy marriage and knee-jerk reactions which caused her relocations. Now, this may not have been the deal-breaker answer given in the past. However, Faith was able to help Rachelle wordsmith her answer to reflect an only positive and truthful set of events.

Rachelle’s next job interview was scheduled for one week after her and Faith’s first meeting. Lots of information to cover in a short time.

Yet, great news!  Rachelle easily got that job, the first one that she and Faith had prepared for!  Her start date, one week later!

There’s so much uncertainty in this economy today, we relish those great fast wins!  Rachelle just needed a little guidance to get over the interview hump. 

Encompass Ministries is here to help people gain/ regain a “stable life” from their greatest point of need.

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Most times we work with families who are working to get on their feet… locally. 

Marsha was referred to us by her friend who successfully went through our program many years ago. You see, Marsha was escaping an abusive marriage and on the run. This friend was letting her stay at her house temporarily, so Marsha didn’t need help with food, just stability. We never met in person, yet through zoom, we were able to work with her weekly as she prepared to apply, interview, and find employment out of state. Soon after her relocation, she earned a promotion and has truly landed on her feet.  She continues to work with us weekly, fine-tuning her new budget. Marsha is forever grateful for the care and prayers she found through Encompass Ministries.

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It happened so suddenly.  One morning, Josella said good-by to her live-in fiancé’ as she loaded all 4  kids in the car to drop off at school before heading to work.  The day seemed normal.  She picked her kids up from after-school care and drove home. Normally, her fiancé’ would have been there by then, with dinner started.

She checked her phone; no messages.  She called him, no answer.  She glanced around for a note.  None found. What had gone wrong?  She called some of his freinds.  No one seemed to have heard from him all day. Had there been in an accident?  She turned on the news to listen and started to cook without him, worried. 

Later, after putting the kids to bed, she found the note… THE NOTE tucked away in a drawer he knew she would open at bedtime. He explained that he wasn’t happy, but didn’t know how to tell her.  He was sorry.  She checked his drawers. Yes, his clothes were gone.

Certainly, she and the kids were wrecked emotionally. But, she instintively knew that she could not afford all the expenses to keep the household going on her own. And what about the credit cards and other financial commitments?  He was gone and he left her holding the bag.

Thankfully, Josella came to Encompass Ministries for help with food for her kids.  Her money was needed just to keep the roof overhead and the lights on. 

What’s next for Josella?  She is planning to start working on household budgeting.  But, there is a good chance she truly does not make enough to juggle everything. If that is the case, we will change course with her and help her find and secure a job that will meet her financial needs.  <><   <><   <><

After experiencing a car accident, Jamie came into Encompass Ministries after losing almost everything. Their car was now totaled and both she and her husband, Mike, had been hurt and were in physical therapy.  They were both now out of work.  Jamie cried as she struggled to get the words out.  How could they provide for their 2 middle-school aged children?  They were struggling too, having to help Mom and Dad like never before. Everyone in the house was afraid of what might come next.

Generally when people come in asking for help with food, they have at least a few things on hand. Not in this case.  Jamie and her fiance’ had nothing… their cupboards were completely bare.

Now, down to one car, Jamie and Mike needed to figure out how they could strategically go forward.  Thankfully, Jamie got a job as a store manager in one of the local malls.  Mike needed to find work closeby.  It took a few weeks, but it has all come together.

Today, they are working to master their household budget, not just to make ends meet, but to get ahead for the first time in their lives.  Not only are they super excited about knowing where every dollar is coming from and where it is going, but being able to put money aside in a savings account is like a dream come true!

What a great experience for their kids.  Sure, it was really hard for a while, but the children are now so proud of their parents.  They have seen the transformation with their own eyes. Being financially responsible gives one confidence to achieve so many other things.