Sabrina

After losing her job and depleting her savings, Sabrina began living in a homeless shelter in Upper Manhattan. She had few job skills and lacked the confidence to get ahead. After a long and unsuccessful job search, she received some basic security guard training through a government program. "That winter I patrolled dangerous construction sites from midnight to 6 a.m. for $5.56 an hour. To stay warm I had to huddle in small plastic huts with no light and often no heater." Of course this salary was nowhere near enough to afford housing in New York City's expensive market.

Sabrina's life began to turn around when she was referred to the Coalition's First Step Job Training Program. "First Step saved my life," she says. "I was so sick and so depressed by the time I started the program that I'm not sure what would have happened to me. They had faith that I could make it, and because they believed in me, I came to believe in myself again."

Sabrina was hired by her internship provider - first as a temp and then as a full-time executive assistant at Columbia University. "I'm employed in a field I enjoy. I plan to go back to school for educational administration. And I thank God and First Step for helping me get my life back on track."

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