Economic Opportunities Council of Indian River County, Inc. (EOC) is helping low-income Indian River County residents achieve their educational and vocational goals, earn a living wage, and move away from poverty and public assistance to financial self-sufficiency. The REACH Program is ending generational poverty in Indian River County one family at a time.
Three REACH Program graduates completed their LPN training at Treasure Coast Technical College in December: Terkedria Henderson, Melissa Jefferson, and Crunesha Neighbors.
“Our REACH clients continue to make us proud. They overcome many obstacles and make many sacrifices to achieve their educational and vocational goals”, says Angela Davis-Green, EOC Executive Director.
Terkedria Henderson is a mother of 3 young girls, ages 4, 5, and 9. Terkedria was trained as a medical assistant through the Adult Education Program in 2011. Until a year ago, she had been working as a Pregnancy Doula with Healthy Start Coalition. When that position came to an end, “all the stars aligned”, said Terkedria. “Everything fell into place, and I was accepted into the REACH Program and the LPN Program at Treasure Coast Technical College.”
The 11 month LPN program is very rigorous. Terkedria was raising three young children and going through a divorce, but she persevered and kept up with her studies. She studied while her children were in school, at their music lessons, early in the morning, and late at night. The entire family was involved. They understood that for those 11 months Mom’s studying had to be her priority. The children wore t-shirts to the LPN graduation that said, “Mommy and I made it through Nursing School”.
After the graduation, Terkedria’s 5-year old daughter announced, “Now we are going to be a doctor.” Terkedria is taking it one step at a time. Her immediate plans are to take and pass her nursing boards. Then, she plans on enrolling at Indian River State College to take her prerequisites to continue her education to become an RN.
Terkedria is thankful to both EOC and Career Source for their investment in her continuing education. However, she said special thanks go to REACH Program Director, Wendy Grow, who Terkedria calls the “God-send that kept her so focused on her goal”.
REACH clients earn GEDs, become phlebotomists, medical assistants, nurses, HVAC Techs, childcare workers, welders, and more. Some are able to complete Associate and Bachelor degrees.
For more information, please contact REACH Program Director, Wendy Grow, by calling 772-562-4177 Ext. 1113, or sending an email to Wendy at firstname.lastname@example.org.