Vicky Contreras* loves helping people. She had always wanted to work in healthcare; though as the youngest of seven children, she knew her family would have limited resources to help her through school. When the opportunity arose to enroll in a free program that would connect her to a career in healthcare, she did not hesitate to apply.
“MAAC’s Connect2Success, a youth workforce program, helped prepare me for a job I truly enjoy, all while I was still working towards my high school diploma,” Vicky shared. “At first, transportation was an issue because I do not have a car. My teachers worked with me and jumped in to help. I received a bus pass and stipend so I could attend the required on-site education and clinical training. I am so thankful for this program and the coaching I continue to receive during my first year of employment.”
In March, Vicky earned her high school diploma and completed the certified nursing assistant (CNA) program. The following month she was hired at a local skilled nursing facility to care for patients as they recover from illness or injury. Vicky’s parents were so proud to see their youngest daughter accomplish her educational goals.
“For decades, MAAC has provided successful workforce development programs geared towards adults who are re-entering the workforce or changing careers,” Arnulfo Manriquez, President/CEO of MAAC shared with GB Magazine. “I am especially excited when our training programs can also help high school students get on a pathway to living wage careers.”
MAAC was founded 55 years ago, by a group of like-minded leaders who were seeking solutions to the endless cycle of hunger and poverty in their community. Today, MAAC continues to work towards providing individuals with support and access to greater economic opportunities through its workforce development pathway. The Connect2Success and Latinos in Finance career training programs are just two examples of the organization’s ongoing commitment to provide San Diego County residents with viable options for economic advancement. In addition to Workforce & Economic Development, MAAC provides resources and services in the areas of Education, Health & Wellbeing, Housing, as well as Advocacy & Leadership Development. MAAC has been a champion for underrepresented communities throughout San Diego County since 1965.
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have all witnessed the three-part health, economic and social crises that our nation is experiencing, creating devastating losses for the communities MAAC serves. The demand for MAAC’s programs and services are greater than ever. And MAAC is growing in every way possible to meet San Diego’s needs.
Volunteer. Champion. Donate. MAAC needs your support now, more than ever.
To learn more about MAAC’s programs and services, or to make a tax-deductible gift, please visit www.MAACproject.org.
*Name has been changed to protect individual’s privacy.