By: Shatoyia Jones, FLP Founder and CEO, Mentor
originally published by Shatoyia on Medium*, updated April 1, 2020
It could be the defining factor of access (or the lack thereof) to the resources you need to be successful in all aspects of life.
As a mentor at the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation, I have first-hand experience engaging in and seeing the power of the FLP community on those we work with and serve and how fast they are able to reach their goals versus trying to do it independently.
So far, our consultations have been comprised of the following:
57.1% — ages 25–40
28.6% — ages 40–55
14.3% — 18–25
with 42.9% of all consultations were looking for a job or interested in learning more about our opportunities.
14.3% are students
with equal proportion for women of African descent and European descent reaching out for our assistance the most and followed by persons identifying as Latinx and Asian, followed by persons of Native American descent. These results could be for a number of reasons:
Thus, we are sharing this data to show that we serve a diverse group of individuals, even though our focus and target audiences are persons of color with special programming for women of color.
What stood out to me is that similar struggles (personal, professional, financial) and goals were very similar to the individuals who came to us for assistance:
As a result, I often hear these top 5 struggles from the individuals (women and men) that I work with and serve in our community:
#5: “Staying organized and consistent.” / “Inconsistency.”
Our 5th most popular struggle among those who have gotten a free consultation with the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation is staying organized and being consistent, whether it be in their personal life, in business or financially.
According to many studies, one most recently published by National Institute of Medicine and Health found that there were consistent (see what we did there?) correlations between disorganization, mindsets, focus, productivity and levels of "pleasantness." And with the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation conducting our own data-based research, we have found that those in underserved, underrepresented and low-income communities, esp. persons of color and more so, women of color, and even more so women of African descent of a more brown complexion, are more likely to have a more difficult time finding the time, mental space and resources to get organized and be intentional and consistent about staying organized.
Why? Because they are too busy trying to survive and just have the day-to-day necessities.
Here at the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation, we offer a variety of personal and professional development assistance for underserved, underrepresented and low-income persons of color and allies. If you or anyone you know is struggling with staying organized or consistency personally or professionally, get a free consultation or schedule a call today.
This topic one that cannot be covered in a brief paragraph, but we will cover it in another article. However, we at the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation are not surprised that health is our #4 most popular struggle amongst those who have gotten a free consultation with us, especially amongst those we serve who identify as low-income persons of color. For those who we have served but have not gotten a consultation, I would say health, whether mental, emotional, spiritual or physical is #1 amongst all of those we serve.
Not only is there an issue with access (socially and environmentally) to clean, nutritious food and water sources, but health care is usually not on the radar, unless covered by employment. In this time of the COVID-19, it is has made health care even more inaccessible as many of our individuals are losing and seeking jobs, not only jobs that offer a living wage and benefits, but jobs where you could, preferably, work-from-home.
#3: “Too much to do and so little time.”
This is common amongst everyone, from the low-income to the middle class to the wealthy. And a lot of it is not necessarily due to money, but from struggle #5, staying organized and consistent. The saying goes that we have the same number of hours in the day as Beyonce. Young Beyonce didn't have all the bells and whistles she had today. So what did she have? A drive, focus, family and small community around her that believed in her, supported her and helped her manage it all until she was able to do it herself, which she proved in her solo career.
Many of us are not as fortunate to have that drive, focus, family and small community around us to keep us stay organized and consistent. Thus, it seems like all of our tasks are piling up, and we're staying busy but not really getting anything done in an orderly, timely and frankly, productive fashion that allows leaves room for self-care. If you are ready to get things done and free up more time, get a free consultation to inquire about how the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation can help you get started today, so that you can focus on what's more important, actually get things done and still have time leftover to take care of yourself (or to organize that closet you've been meaning to clean out for the past 5 years.)
#2: “Lack of Resources... / “Advice.”
At the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation, we believe that the resources exist, but they are scattered all over the place (thus making it hard to determine which is right for you) and don't get enough awareness, publicity, funding or support. This is why the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation offers the opportunity for reputable organizations, businesses and service providers to partner with us to bring their resources to the communities we serve and to bring our resources to their communities. We do this as a means to scale awareness and increase access to the resources available to help individuals [personally, professionally and financially) go from #StruggletoStability . Furthermore, we offer individuals looking to go from #StruggletoStability the opportunity to get individualized, 1:1 mentorship to get matched to resources and information that are right for them as individuals, their circumstances and their budgets.
#1: “I don’t know where to start.”
Many of us don't know what we want, and so we have no idea what to look for and what guidance is needed. And then there are those of us who have an inkling of what we want but are not sure how to confirm if we are doing what's best for us: personally, professionally, financially. AND THEN, there are those of us who simply just do not know where to start to answer the important questions or to locate the best place to get that information, guidance and mentorship and not get scammed or break the bank doing it. That's where the internet comes in. But there is so much information that it is overwhelming, and it can be difficult to figure out which opportunity speaks to your individual circumstances. That's where the First Ladies of Poverty Foundation comes in.
Whether you know what your goals are and in need of a mentor, accountability partner or skill to reach it, are in need of creating an individualized strategy and plan just for you on how to attain your goals in your unique circumstances, or just in need period and need to get clarity and focus before you can do any of that, we are here to support you and connect you to the right mentors, communities and resources to do just that.
When you are ready, we offer you the opportunity to get assistance in clarifying and breaking down your struggles and then supporting you in creating and channeling for focus into attainable goals that you can accomplish over time with a mentor who can help you reach it if you so choose. If you are an independent learner, we offer custom classes and webinars, with manageable payment plans as needed. With us, you have options.
The Power of Community
The power of community can be summed up in one word: access.
checklists, articles, videos and opportunity to stay connected to supportive and ambitious folks, ask questions and receive 1:1 mentorship on anything and everything from relationships to organization to healthcare plans and benefits to housing to employment to financial planning and stability.
Our focus: persons of color with special programming for women of color, but guess what? We turn away no one who identifies as an active ally and needs our services.
In other words, we got you. And we have the receipts to prove it.
Questions or comments? Comment below! We love to hear from and engage in conversation with ya'll, or schedule a [free] call today! This week's community question is:
What are your goals for 2020, and how has the COVID-19 helped or not helped you in reaching your goals?
*view the original article here
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