Monica Morales & Good Counsel Mom Making it Happen

Posted by | January 03, 2017 | News | No Comments

Today, January 3, 2017, Monica Morales was back to make things happen for Good Counsel homes!  Last time Monica decided to make things happen, Major World donated a much-needed brand new van to our Bronx home to help our moms and babies get to appointments and school safely.  This time, Ms. Morales worked with the College of Staten Island to ensure one mom’s next best step would be smooth sailing!

Diamond Mitchell came to the Staten Island home with her two year old son, Jacob, in October of 2016.  She had been sleeping on the train with Jacob for several days after the New York Prevention Assistance and Temporary Housing office (“PATH”) had denied her shelter.  While on the streets, Diamond suffered an asthma attack and went to the hospital.  She was afraid to speak to a social worker for fear they would remove Jacob from her care if they found out her situation. Once discharged from the hospital, Diamond returned to PATH pleading for shelter and was turned away – again. She then asked the foster agency for help but, because she had aged out they were unable to assist her. They did print out a list of women’s shelters in the New York area and gave it to her.  Diamond said Good Counsel was on the top of the list and she was relieved when she called and was immediately scheduled for an intake interview.

Good Counsel’s intake process is efficient and effective with no red tape.  We never say no to any homeless, pregnant woman in need so a room was quickly readied in our Staten Island home for Diamond and Jacob.  Shortly after her arrival on Staten Island, Diamond gave birth to her baby girl, Jurnee, now two months old.  Diamond has also been taking parenting classes offered in the home and working with a tutor in order to obtain her GED. Looking to take the next best step, Diamond expressed interest in attending the College of Staten Island, seeking to take the Medical Assistant Course offered by the Continuing Studies program, and that’s where Monica Morales stepped in to help make it happen!  Today, Diamond was awarded a READY grant from the College of Staten Island!

From homeless to hopeful: Single mom gets dream chance to finish school

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“Through the College’s new READY initiative, the College of Staten Island is able to fully cover the cost of tuition for Diamond, once she receives her high school equivalency credential.  READY stands for Restorative Educational Access and Development for Youth.  It is generously funded by the Petrie Foundation and the Staten Island Foundation, and its goal is to provide workforce development opportunities for young people ages 18-24 who are out of school and not employed.  Through READY, Diamond will participate in coursework, career readiness training, and an internship.  She will receive robust student support, including help with finding a job in her new field once she completes the program.”  Christopher Cruz Cullari, Executive Director, Continuing Education, and Professional Development.

Diamond is not the only mom who needs help in taking the next best step.  All of our moms on Staten Island would benefit greatly from assistance in order to further their education or obtain professional certification in a number of fields.  These are the positive steps that lead to steady, secure, and sustainable employment so once a mom graduates from Good Counsel, she is able to transition to life on her own, providing for herself and her children.

You can make it happen!

We are fortunate to have such an awesome educational resource in our neighborhood for our moms to take advantage.  As Ken Bach, Director of Communications states, “The College of Staten Island is consistently ranked in the top twenty colleges nationally for empowering students to reach new levels of academic and socioeconomic success.  We are proud to support Diamond in her quest to overcome her past and create a new future in service to our community by studying at the College of Staten Island, and thank Good Counsel for sharing a vision that embraces academic success and career empowerment for new and expectant mothers.”

Would you help a mother like Diamond pursue her dreams at the College of Staten Island?

Yes, I want to help another Good Counsel mom



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