A Mother’s Inspiration

Cara Staff

In 2014, Regina was ready for her next chapter. She had spent years struggling with addiction and, after an arrest, had lost custody of her children. She was living in a half-way house and wanted to make a positive change. A friend told her about Cara and it sounded exactly like what she needed.

“I wanted to change everything I was doing, so I started doing the opposite.”

It took time for Regina to adjust to Cara. She struggled with things like time management, but she kept working and improving. Her job search was long and slow and she started to get discouraged.

“I’d go on group interviews and everyone would get a job, but not me!” The frustrations bred feelings of wanting to quit. “I used to never finish anything…so many times I wanted to give up.”

But then she would think of her son.

Regina’s son was in high school and she worried that, like many boys in her neighborhood, he wouldn’t graduate. Regina herself had never completed high school. “All I wanted was for my son to finish high school. I didn’t want to watch him make the same choices I did.”

With that, Regina found a way to motivate herself and her son: They would accomplish their goals together.

“We made a bet that he would finish high school and I would finish Cara. I had to show him that if his momma can do it, he could, too.”

Regina kept going. When she felt like it was too hard or a job would never come, she remembered that her son was working hard, too. “My son motivated me.”

Regina beams with pride as she gets her name on the Cara Great Wall.

It took time and perseverance, but after a year Regina found a job at CTA and her son graduated high school. Since then, Regina has moved to a new position at Catholic Charities, where she was named Employee of the Month and has already earned two promotions.

One year after her job placement at Catholic Charities, Regina came back to Cara for her Great Wall ceremony, beaming with pride as she shared her story of how her son motivated her to reach her goals.

“My son is so proud of me and everything I’ve accomplished!”

More than 100 strong moms are currently transforming their life and their family at Cara (and hundreds more are among our alumni). Click here to read more stories of our hard-working moms!

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