“In December 2020, after being unemployed as a result of covid, I found myself with 3 children under the age of 5, struggling to keep up with our monthly expenses. My situation was urgent, dire and I needed help. After a bit of online research for resources I came across The Charlotte Area Fund(CAF). Along with other applications that I had submitted that day, with no way of knowing whether this would actually materialize into the help I desperately needed, I submitted an application. Initially my interest was assistance with my acute immediate needs-I had no way of knowing the full blessing that submitting the application that day would lead to.

Not long after finding CAF, I was attending virtual resume building, financial literacy and self development classes. These classes were invigorating, fun, clear, professional and most importantly useful! I took away many gems, reminders and motivation that I needed at that time. Once my classes had ended CAF didn’t turn and release me to “go figure it out”. NO, they matched me with Trey Sarter, the best success coach I could have. Trey helped me to lay out a plan of where I wanted to be not just immediately but in the future. We mapped out 1month, 6months, 1year, 2 years & even a 5 year plan on what I envisioned for myself and my family. Going through this process helped me in putting everything into perspective and recognizing the importance of creating my future instead of allowing it.

My next step was to secure employment with a regular consistent income. I also especially needed this employment to be fulfilling beyond the financial compensation. I sorted through the classes and trainings that CAF had a pre-existing relationship with, but none were quite right for me. Eventually I was offered a position with an organization that I knew and loved. The only caveat was that I had to complete a certification training to be hired. I knew that CAF sometimes sponsored trainings outside of their network so I figured “take a chance & ask”. I approached Trey to see if this training that I needed was something CAF may consider sponsoring and prayerfully my request was approved!

On Friday, July 23rd, I officially completed this training! My new position as Executive Project Manager begins September 7th!

I am grateful. Very grateful. Charlotte Area Fund, the support that you offered me and my family has literally been life changing. You helped in a way I didn’t know that I needed. Not only offering resources, but offering real support to self sufficiency. Thank you!”

-Ayyana Nzomo