I Came From Nothing


“I came from nothing. I was in a shelter. Sometimes I was sleeping in the streets.”

Kwantia Cummings first came to SEM 5 years ago during what she describes as troubling times.

“I met Mrs. Harris at a hair salon down the street, and she always told people about SEM. She said if there was anyone who was looking for a job or looking to get their GED that SEM was an option.”

“I wasn’t working for 3-4 years, then after coming to SEM, I started working at McDonald’s,” says Kwantia.

During her time at McDonald’s, Kwantia came to realize that she had a passion for working with children.

“I started volunteering at my kids’ school for 2 years. I wasn’t getting paid, but I didn’t miss a day and I wasn’t late. I tried to give them the same impression as if I were employed, so I worked hard. I did whatever I could.”

Kwantia’s hard wark did not go unnoticed.

“Then, the principal came to me and asked if I was looking for a job. I said, ‘yeah.’ On August 22, I started as Dedicated Aid at Center City Public Charter School. Southeast Ministry helped me get to this point. If there was anything I needed, whether it be personal, or a transportation issue, I was able to come to Mrs. Harris. Whenever I come across others in need, I always tell them to go to SEM because whatever they need, there is someone in the building that can help.”

Kwantia acknowledges that the road to self-suffiency is not easy, but her advice to others is to, “stay true to yourself, be dedicated, and work hard!”

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