SkillUP Success Stories: Chelle Haynes

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May 6, 2022

SkillUP Success Stories

Chelle Haynes

Chelle Haynes: 

At the height of the pandemic, Chelle Haynes, a single mother of five, was out of work for 303 days. As a woman who had worked to support herself since age 18, being unemployed was a humbling and stressful experience for Chelle. "During my career, I have always been dedicated to helping others and sharing resources. I never expected that one day I would need those same resources,” she said.

Because she had a professional career, Chelle said she felt protected from the threat of being laid off. “But, COVID changed my life and the lives of so many others," she said. 

Chelle learned about the SkillUP program from a Facebook post. As a SNAP recipient, she was eligible for SkillUP services and began to think about changing her career path, possibly even pursuing specialized training. "It felt like what I was doing wasn't working, and I needed a different perspective," Chelle said.

Chelle reached out to the Central Missouri Community Action Agency, which administered the local SkillUP program. Workforce Specialist Lacey worked with Chelle to develop a plan. "I soon realized that against what felt like immense odds, I was no longer going through this alone."

Chelle Quote

Together, Lacey and Chelle looked at available jobs and began submitting applications. Throughout the process, Chelle said Lacey lifted a weight off her shoulders, making her feel supported. Finally after 303 days and 75 submitted resumes, Chelle was offered a job! 

Chelle attributes her career success to the SkillUP team. "I am now able to provide for my family, and I have so many more opportunities. Lacey and the SkillUP program were a light of hope during a very dark time for me!"

The SkillUP program is Missouri’s employment and training program for Food Stamp (SNAP) recipients. The program is funded through the United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service. The program is also funded through the Administration for Children and Families, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families block grant.

Additional Resources

  • The Mo Services Navigator helps you easily search statewide for programs and services you may need.
  • The Missouri Resource Guide lists resources available in Missouri to help you and your family move towards a healthier, more stable future.
  • The DSS Events Calendar lists job fairs, hiring events, and other scheduled opportunities that may be of interest to you.

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