Working through YES was one of my greatest and most memorable experiences growing up and as a teenager in Ithaca. Youth Employment Service helped me tremendously. It helped me support myself while i was in middle school and high school, but more importantly, the organization helped me support my mother financially while she was a single mother of four children.
While I was growing up, my father was still living in Liberia in west Africa, and the rest of the family lived in Ithaca. As the oldest of four children, at the age of fourteen, I had to step up to the plate and take his place as a father figure. With the jobs that YES helped me get, i was able to buy school clothes for my younger siblings, pay for groceries, and pay part of the electric bill to help my mother support us. In addition to supporting my mother with household responsibilities, I was able to save a huge part of the money I made through YES for my first and second year of college.
Through the YES program, back in 2003, I was lucky to be set up with a summer job at the Alternatives Federal Credit Union. At this job I came across some very good people. One of them, Carol Hoffman, she told me about the Money Wise program. I joined that program and I was able to save for my college tuition. Without the YES program setting me up with that job, I may not have had the opportunity to meet good people like Carol and become connected with such an important program.
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I currently work for the Ithaca Youth Bureau for the the Paul Schreurs Memorial Program. I run an after-school program, write up the newsletters and plans, and run the summer program. At PSMP, we do college tours, activities, and many other things for youth in our program.
I also work at Coltivare, a restaurant in town. I am a supervisor and a host. I work on invoices and I am in charge of graduation, Easter and mother's day reservations.
As a YES teen, I worked at Stewart Park, AFCU, Southside, and Paul Schreurs Memorial Program. YES, was a part of my life as soon as I turned 14 years old. I remember working at all of my jobs and enjoying every minute. Stewart park and PSMP were my two favorite jobs. Working with kids has and will always be a passion in my life.