As a single mother of two toddler boys, Ashley knew that she needed to continue her education in order to provide a good and stable home for her family. Although she enrolled in an intensive Licensed Practical Nursing program, Ashley found the task of juggling part-time work as a nursing assistant, full-time coursework and raising her sons to be a bit daunting. Lifeline, Lake County’s Community Action Agency, had a Family Development program to help her through this complex time in her life.


The Family Development program pairs clients up with professional case workers who conduct comprehensive assessments, provide support and create action plans. Participants work on long-term strategies, skill building, and setting and achieving realistic goals and expectations to help obtain self-sufficiency and improve family life.

“Ashley wanted to use her time in the Family Development program to enhance her budgeting skills and to brainstorm solutions when she was facing challenges managing her busy life,” said Michelle Mezaris, her Family Advocate. Through Ashley and Michelle’s interactions in the program, it became clear that Ashley’s real dream was to complete her LPN training and start college to pursue her bachelor’s degree in Nursing.

Ashley completed the LPN program, is studying for the licensure exam, and she has applied to nursing school.

To learn more about Community Action Agency programs in your area, visit www.oacaa.org. Note, not all agencies offer Family Development programs.

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