Kim Greehy was at the point of her life where she was responsible for finding a job, a place to live and paying her own bills. She had gone to school but didn’t really know what she wanted to do. To add to that difficult time in anyone’s life, Kim was aging out of Foster Care without the support system she needed.
That’s when she was recommended to give our Fostering Wellness Workforce Readiness program a try.
“I was struggling to find a job, to look for a place of my own so coming here helped me focus on what I really want to do,” says Kim. “It has really helped me gain that support system that I really, really needed.”
Fostering Wellness is a collaborative of six different organizations led by the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle. The Workforce Readiness Program is a 10-week program focusing on culinary training, employment skills and leadership opportunities for young people with a history of foster care in Durham, Orange, and Wake counties.
“Foster children often feel like they have to have their whole lives together by age 18,” says Kim. “Life is hard and when you are an adult and you have to pay for your own housing and everything else, it can be frustrating, it can be depressing living on your own, feeling alone. It’s important to have a support system like Ms. Rashidah, Pushti, and the entire Inter-Faith Food Shuttle.”
Kim graduated from the program in spring 2017 and then completed an internship with the Food Shuttle as a front desk receptionist. It’s experience that she says has been invaluable as she is applying for jobs.
“I would say the program is a lot more than training people how to cook,” explains Kim. “It’s how to know yourself better. It’s understanding other people and what they are going through.”
“The culinary class connects you with cooking but it teaches you how to do for others. When you’re in your kitchen, you’re cooking for yourself mostly but when you’re at the Food Shuttle, you’re cooking for others.”
Kim has plans to get a degree in social work from N.C. State and help kids like herself as they navigate through the foster care system. She wants to be that support system that she found at the Food Shuttle and the Fostering Wellness Collaborative.