Circle of Concern feeds the hungry and provides assistance to low income families living in west St. Louis County. We help with wholesome foods, emergency financial assistance, scholarships, kids programs, coaching, counseling and career mentorship.
When Abby's husband left her and her infant son several years ago, Abby struggled to pay the mortgage, utilities and daycare. She was working part-time and attending school. She wanted to be a teacher.
After trying on her own for months, she told herself, "If I don't ask for help, I'm going to be struggling for the rest of my life." She turned to Circle of Concern for help. At her monthly visits, she shopped in our client choice food pantry. She also met with a case worker, who helped her with a miriad of services; and listened as Abby spoke of her challenges. Abby set goals, accessed valuable programs, and continued to move forward.
She participated in two holiday programs that Circle offered -- the annualThanksgiving Basket event -- where she received a frozen turkey, fresh vegetables, boxed stuffing, cranberry sauce and more -- and the annual Holiday Adoption event, where she and her young son received gifts from generous, caring anonymous donors.
Each year that she re-enrolled in classes, she applied for an adult scholarship through Circle of Concern's scholarship program.
After a few years, she proudly earned her diploma and her teaching degree. After some searching, she landed a teacher's assistant position that pays $13 per hour. She had hoped for more, but she's got her foot in the door at an award-winning local school district. She knows that if she works hard, she'll advance in her career. Soon, she'll "graduate" from Circle of Concern. She is on her way to the life she has dreamed of, and she credits Circle for helping her along the way.