Happy Thanksgiving from WOW Staff and Students!

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Happy Thanksgiving from Work Options for Women! We wish you the best of family, friends, and food on this special day.

We are thankful for the dedication of our staff, the determination and hard work of our students, their resilience through struggle and their happiness in success, and the support from our volunteers and donors throughout the year. So many hands go into doing the work we do. Thank you all for your generosity and selflessness.

As you prepare for your road trips and visits, or wait for guests to arrive, we wanted to share with you some of our reflections about past Thanksgivings as well as what we are thankful for. Read on for more about what staff and students are thankful for and remember this holiday:

Cheryl, a student who is in her sixth week of training and in the job-search phase, said she is most thankful for her family and for being able to be enrolled in the Work Options for Women program.

Our case management supervisor Courtney recalled a tradition her mother has at Thanksgiving where she will say what she is thankful for. But instead of talking about one thing, Courtney’s mom will go around the table and say how each person in her family makes her proud. “Of course I’m bawling at the end,” Courtney said.

Darlene, who is in her 10th week as a student and working on job search, said she remembers the warmth of coming together to enjoy a good meal and share the different stories in her family. “Like what are the kids up to, things like that,” she said.

The first thing Kassi, WOW case manager, remembers when she thinks of Thanksgiving is her grandma’s mashed potatoes. Also, “the family is too big and the house is too small,” making for one cozy holiday meal.

Katie, our enrollment specialist, said that one Thanksgiving her grandparents took over preparing the meal. “My mother isn’t exactly the best in the kitchen,” she said with a laugh. So when her grandfather asked where the butter dish might be in the kitchen… “My mother brought out a giant like two-gallon tub of Country Crock margarine and put it on the table.” It was neither butter, nor a dish. But now Katie’s mom receives empty Country Crock margarine tubs as a joke at Christmas.

A student who is in his sixth week of training and searching for a job, Ernest said he misses spending time with his family, most of whom have passed away. But he keeps the memory of them very close to him.

Andrea, WOW’s marketing assistant, said her best Thanksgiving memories are from when she was a kid. “Since my dad was in the military we often lived overseas and ate our Thanksgiving dinners without much family around,” she said. “It was always a quiet holiday, but I got to spend it cooking with my mother.” With only four of them around the dinner table, the menu often consisted of Cornish game hens, mashed potatoes, gravy, stuffing and “enchiladas (duh!).”

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