Where there is hope, there's a way

Patricia Smith is one of the most positive, upbeat, and warm people you may ever be lucky enough to know. Her mother constantly reminded her of two of the most important things in life: “believe in God, and have good credit.” Patricia graduated from Getting Ahead in 2011. She was originally drawn to the class because, after losing her job of 17 years (and her incredible credit score along with it), she wanted to learn how she might start to repair her credit score. She got connected to Bridges through Real Services and is grateful for the folks at both organization who supported and encouraged her. The Getting Ahead class kept her focused gave her structure for her day, and most importantly, gave her hope. When she lost her job and her health started getting worse, it was hard to have hope. Patty believes that her positive attitude today is in large part because of what she was able to learn through Getting Ahead.

Since graduation from Getting Ahead, Patricia recently finished another class — the Bridges Financial Management Class, where she learned even more about repairing credit among other things. The BFMC was helpful because it was a nice, neat package of relevant information on how to have a better financial situation. Besides classes, Patricia has been spread- ing the word about everything she learned in GA and BFMC — especially to her teenage grandchildren. She encourages eve- ryone she meets to sign up for these classes — she calls them “undercover college” because “it’s like going to college but not having to pay for it!” Through some tough times, Patricia has continued to stay hopeful and enjoy life. Her final words of wis- dom reflect this, “All things, especially hard things, are tempo- rary. Be positive. Be happy. Be strong.”