Cassandra’s Story

Fast-Track Education on Life

When Cassandra’s family moved from Mississippi to Milwaukee when she was 5 months old, they hoped to better their lives. Instead, her family struggled from paycheck to paycheck. Despite their struggles, however, Cassandra’s parents emphasized one important value: education.

Cassandra was 12 years old when her mother died. Suddenly her world turned upside down. “It took a big toll on our family,” she recalls. “My father turned to drugs and I ended up kind of lost in life.”

When she got pregnant during her senior year in high school, she dropped out to care for her son. Five years later she had another son — and she struggled to make ends meet until she and her children ended up homeless, at times even sleeping in parks. Both of her sons were already in school and she knew she needed help.

That’s when she learned about Joy House and Cross Trainers Academy. “They immediately stepped in and helped me with everything, from getting my kids enrolled in school to helping me get back on my feet,” she says.

Cassandra knew she needed a fast-track education on life. And she got it. She learned how to write a resume and look for a job, she learned how to manage her finances and how to be a better parent, and she learned how to draw closer to God. At the same time, her kids experienced the stability and quality teaching they needed at Cross Trainers Academy.

“I think Cross Trainers Academy is the best thing ever,” she says. “They’ve not only helped my kids, but the things they’ve learned at school are helping me — especially spiritually. Now we’re all growing in Christ.

“The people at Joy House and CTA are more than teachers or even friends. They’re like family. It’s hard to do this life alone. Now I feel like I don’t have to.”