Paving a New Path

Paving a New PathI scurried into the seminar venue and slid into the back of the room just as the presenter began to speak. “Welcome to the Bridges out of Poverty Workshop…”

I have to admit this was one workshop that had intrigued me from the start. Having been born into a migrant working family, I was quite skeptical of what “they” had to teach me about poverty. What do they know about sweating for your dollar? I’d also learned from a different workshop that, for me, the term “poverty” struck a nerve. But even with these doubts, I made a point to keep an open mind and not be judgmental.

Then they hit me with a bombshell. Not only did the main presenter come from poverty, she grew up almost exactly like I did! Standing front and center in this room full of people, she shared her story and I was amazed at how many times I caught myself nodding in agreement. It was nice to see someone like me who was taking the first step and reaching out to make a difference—and succeeding in making a difference!

Many times, this message—Make a change! Break the cycle!—can feel overused and meaningless. That was not the case, however, as I listened to this woman speak. Instead, I was relieved to hear that I was not the only one teased for breaking out of the “norm” and rising above. I was thrilled to learn that Bridges out of Poverty offers a system to help people out of poverty—a system that has been tested and proven to work. And the best part is that I had it all available to me: the knowledge, the resources and the will to take this program and apply it to do something good.

Generational poverty? Check. Situational poverty? Check. The ability to break the chain and strive to do better for my family and myself? CHECK.

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