Fourteen years ago, Josie moved to Colorado Springs from Africa with her mom. Josie made straight A’s in high school and went on to study mechanical engineering at the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs for three years.
While in school, Josie fell into a drug addiction and began getting into trouble. She got involved with marijuana, cocaine and later, meth because she felt like she “wanted to try new experiences.” Josie was uninformed about how highly addictive methamphetamine is, and unfortunately her habit cost her the support of family and friends. Josie became homeless and began the cycle of being in and out of jail.
A year ago, she was sentenced to ComCor, a non-profit organization that provides housing rehabilitation and other treatment services for clients in community corrections. After spending some time there, she relapsed and was sent to serve the remainder of her sentence at Community Alternatives El Paso (CAE), a halfway house in Colorado Springs. She learned about the Rehire Program while at CAE and believed it would be a good opportunity for change.
Before entering the Rehire Program, Josie had not worked in nearly four years. During her time in the program, she has been able to reintegrate back into the workforce and obtain full-time employment for the first time in her life. The Rehire Program has helped her get back on her feet and has helped her with basic needs.
Rehire has also helped Josie succeed in her transition back into the “real world.” While at CAE, residents are moved through “levels” to begin their reintegration into society. Quickly moving from a level 2 to a level 3, once Josie reaches level 4, she will be able to start to look for her own apartment and will be a step closer to leaving the facility. Recently, at the end of May, Josie was offered a full-time position at a Goodwill Retail Store. In the future, Josie plans on going back to school for mathematics and hopes to have her own tutoring business to tutor kids in math.
Administered through Goodwill’s Career Development Services program, ReHire Colorado is an 11-week, transitional employment program helping individuals with barriers to employment re-enter the workforce. Eligible participants benefit from paid, on-the-job training in a supportive work environment, and develop marketable job skills to launch or advance their careers. Learn more about ReHire on our website here.