Kelly’s Journey: From Struggling to Thriving

Kelly recently took part in NFCC’s workforce development program.  Kelly spoke with us about her experience with the job coaching program and shared how NFCC helped her and her children navigate a financial crisis many years ago. 


Kelly found herself in a difficult situation 15 years ago when she and her husband divorced. She was left with no job and three young children to raise on her own. She struggled to make ends meet and was unable to provide for her family’s basic needs.

“It was bad,” says Kelly.  “I had no financial support.  My ex-husband took off without paying child support or alimony.  I was a stay-at-home mom for 14 years.  I had no skills, no resources. I didn’t know what to do.”

Kelly knew that she needed help to get back on her feet, and that’s when she turned to NFCC. NFCC provided Kelly with emergency financial assistance, which helped her pay her rent and other bills, and connected her with additional community resources.

“I came close to being homeless a few times. There were times I couldn’t pay the electric bill or the water bill, and it was terrifying,” says Kelly.

She knew she needed a way to support her family. Being out of the workforce for many years, Kelly felt her options were limited.  She completed a medical assistant course, however, she quickly found she wasn’t able to balance the demands of a full-time medical office job with those of being a single mother.

So, Kelly took more flexible, part-time work at a local grocery store chain. As the kids grew and needed less hands-on care, she moved to full-time and continues to work at the store on a part-time basis.

New Career for a New Stage of Life

While Kelly enjoys her retail job, she felt it was time to think about the future. Now that her children were grown and she was getting older, she wanted a less physically demanding job.  She decided to give a career in the medical assistant field another try.  She began seeing job postings online, but as she started to apply, she realized she needed help with her resume and job search skills.

She remembered reading about NFCC’s new workforce program, so she signed up. Kelly was matched with David, one of the volunteer career coaches.

“David was encouraging me all along and guiding me on which way to go and what to do in terms of an application and things like that. I went for a few interviews and landed a job which suited my needs.  It was just amazing.”

Kelly now works part-time as a medical assistant in a small pediatric office, where she’s receiving additional on-the-job training that will help her grow in her career.

She’s happy that she took the leap.

“I like being able to help the patients.  The parents who come in are often frantic and they’re tired.  I like helping them and easing their worries. I’m the first line person that they speak to, and I feel very accomplished when I know how to triage properly when I get phone calls,” says Kelly.

Kelly is grateful for NFCC’s job coaching program.

“I would really encourage anyone who’s looking to enhance their career or to move upward in their field or switch to a different field to try NFCC’s job coaching. My coach David was so wonderful. He has a whole wealth of experience and knowledge,” says Kelly. “David helped prep me for interviews. I was so nervous about meeting the doctors and going back into the interview phase of it after so many years, it was nerve-wracking. And all that prepping really sets you in the right mind frame to conquer your fears and go do it.”

Did You Know:

900 families and 1,800 children were served by the holiday program for warm coats, Thanksgiving meals and holiday toys last year.