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Always Had It In You

July 11, 2018

It is easy for us to focus on our problems to the point where we forget to take care of ourselves. It is at this point that we need to take a step back and start to see the whole picture. It is when we can step back and realize that those challenges do not have to be a barrier, but something that pushes us forward. Paulette Culbreth had to take a step back and realize all the resources around her to change her life for the better, and it was the best decision she has ever made.

Paulette is a resident of Southside Homes along with her two daughters Taqawnia and Airel. She also is a grandmother five strong boys Quantavis, Tyler, Ja’Kaden, Trevor and Garnett. They moved to Southside Homes four years ago from Claremont Apartments. As soon as they arrived Taqawnia was instantly networking with her neighbors and getting to know the community. Paulette, on the other hand, took a little time to come out of her shell. “I was not use to this. I’m from the country,” said Paulette. Taqawnia was not going to let her mother hide in the house, so she told Paulette about CHA’s Jobs Plus Center.  It was great timing, because she had just lost her job. Paulette met with CHA Case Coordinator Chad Martin, and he asked her what she wanted to do as a career? Paulette never thought about what she wanted to do, but knew she wanted to set an example for her daughters and grandchildren.

Chad started enrolling Paulette in different programs where she learned skills that would prepare her for employment. After going to a career fair, she was offered a position as an HMS Hostess at the airport. Within two months Paulette had been promoted as a Supervisor. She could see her confidence growing and the CHA staff could see it too.   Paulette admits to making some mistakes in life that cost her and her family, but now she is excited about her future and setting new goals for herself. Paulette shared her story with her neighbors.  Residents began coming to the Jobs Plus office left and right from Paulette’s referrals.  Even though she was happy, Paulette wanted a career she was passionate about.  Paulette found herself back in Chad’s office. This time he sent her upstairs to meet Sophie Underwood, Employment Specialist for Grace-Mar Services. Sophie looked at Paulette’s resume and signed her up for the program “Celebration of You”. This class taught her resume writing, how to dress for success and how to set goals.

Paulette continued to attend every program she could, to become the best version of herself. CHA’s staff saw her dedication and genuine love for the community and offered her a position as a Community Jobs Coach. Paulette knew first-hand the impact that Jobs Plus on her life and the chance to do that for others, was a dream come true.  Paulette is committed to showing her family that life’s setbacks, do not have to define your future.  “I finally get to be the mother and grandmother I want to be for my kids and my grandkids,” said Paulette emotionally. Paulette’s journey is far from over. She still has much to accomplish and many lives to impact. 

CHA knows Paulette is a great example of what happens when you step out of your comfort zone and we thank her for being a leader in the community. 

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