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Spring 2018 - Volume 1, Issue 2

WRC Women’s Resource Center Magazine

7 BENEFITS OF

mental health COUNSELING

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WHY EVERYONE NEEDS A

peer resource

ADVISOR

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cover girl

FELICIA PHILLIPS, J. JILL WOMAN OF THE MONTH

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MyWRC | Programs That Fit Your Life


Felicia Phillips at her J. Jill fitting. Page 4. TABLE OF CONTENTS 3

Letter from WRC President & CEO, Ashley Brown We could all use a little help.

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J. Jill’s Woman of the Quarter Meet our cover girl, Felicia Phillips.

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Volunteer Spotlight

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Sandwich, Anyone?

Peer Resource Advisor Kim Roden helps women navigate the path to empowerment.

Multi-generational households are on the rise. 10

Benefits of Mental Health Counseling Seven ways counseling will enhance your life.

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April - June 2018

Program & event listing.

MYWRC MAGAZINE HEADQUARTERS

WRC Program Director, Chris Braun & Peer Advisor, Shirley Pascal.

1926 Manatee Avenue West Bradenton, FL 34205 Phone: (941) 256-9721 • Fax: (941) 708-9557 www.MyWRC.org • info@MyWRC.org PRESIDENT AND CEO

Ashley Brown WRC BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Mandy Quinones Board Chair

Gray Videnka Vice-Chair

Reba Rogers Treasurer

Michael Prohidney Secretary

Suzanne Fugate

Immediate Past Chair

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2018 Sarasota Wonder Women. Page 17. MyWRC MAGAZINE • 941-256-9721

Kimberly Bald, Esq. Jaymie Carter Nancy Christian Pauldie Howrigan Melissa Karp Elsbree, Esq. Cynthia Sharpe Malkin Brenda Parker


LETTER FROM ASHLEY

I have asked for help and support from friends more than ever, and completely given up on the idea of being able to handle it all, because let’s face it: no one can.

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hy is it so hard to ask for help? I ask this question without judgment, because while I’m a lot better than I used to be, I am not the best at asking for help. Personally, being vulnerable is the hardest thing about asking for help. As we age, progress in our careers, gain more and more responsibility, we feel we SHOULD always have the answers. We also live in a society that values strong, self–sufficient people and it can feel like a weakness to ask for help. All of us should be able to pick ourselves up and move on, right? The reality is, whether through our own actions or unexpected twists of fate, we can find ourselves dealing with complex problems: Job loss, divorce, aging parents, health concerns, or financial concerns. Where do you turn when you are dealing with a bump in the road? Even if you have the best of circumstances - all of the resources and support systems to deal with the challenges of life - they can be overwhelming. But what if you don’t have a support system? What if your finances are so strained that you are barely

Ashley Brown President and CEO

surviving? Think about what that does to your thought process. It is impossible to make good decisions or be optimistic about the future when you are stressed and overwhelmed. Often because we are reluctant to reach out for help when we need it, we find ourselves even deeper in despair. One of the best parts of working for the WRC is that when I find myself struggling with anything, I know there are resources I can connect with to work through my issues. As an example, last year my Mom had a stroke and ultimately we made the decision to move her from the home she loved in South Carolina to a wonderful community in Bradenton. It has been a transition for all of us and it’s not always easy, but we are coping. She has participated in WRC’s Challenge program and is finding her new normal. We are starting a support group for caretakers and the sandwich generation (see the article on JoAnn Fabec, pg. 8). I have asked for help and support from friends more than ever, and completely given up on the idea of being able to handle it all, because let’s face it: no one can. I also count myself lucky that my Mom is here with us because she is a fabulous person! MyWRC.org

This issue of MyWRC is loaded with articles and information on the benefits of asking for help, sharing the challenges of being in a new stage in life and the journey of a woman gaining the tools and training to improve the outlook for her family. We also highlight one of the hallmark WRC programs, Peer Resource Advising. This amazing program has been in existence for decades and staffed mainly by volunteers. Over the years we have had amazing women filling the role of peer resource advisors. These women see our clients at their most vulnerable and overwhelmed. It is truly amazing to see the change in our clients after they spend an hour with a peer. Having someone listen with compassion and free of judgement helps clear the mind to develop a plan to move forward. Thank you to all of our volunteers and staff who make a difference every day. I hope that you enjoy the second issue of MyWRC Magazine. Please share our programs with those who might benefit from our services. 60% of our clients are referred to us through a friend or family member. The referral you make could change a life. 3


FEATURE

Chasing Her Dreams Just As Fast As She Can

J.JILL WOMAN

OF THE

QUARTER

FELICIA PHILLIPS

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he Women’s Resource Center (WRC) is thrilled to recognize its first MyWRC J.Jill “Woman of the Quarter”— Felicia Phillips. Felicia equates adversity with opportunity and is thriving because of who she represents: WRC—Women Resonating Courage, Conviction, and Commitment.

Regina Morris, her WRC case manager, and others will attest to how Felicia embodies WRC. “In the time I’ve worked with Felicia, she has had many obstacles placed in her path, which have given her reason to pause—but in no way have stopped her from moving forward. From one of our first meetings, I realized she was a determined lady with a ‘where there’s a will, there’s a way’ attitude, so there is absolutely no doubt in my mind that she will always find a way.” To honor Felicia’s unwavering commitment, the WRC, in collaboration with the J.Jill Compassion Fund, named her the first My WRC J.Jill Woman of the Quarter. Aside from serving as a role model to others, J.Jill celebrated Felicia’s success by treating her to a shopping spree at their store located in University Town Center. Store manager Kelly Ann Csekits along with stylist Deena Thomas were fabulous and gave her a great start on building her professional wardrobe.

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J. Jill Compassion Fund Grant Gives Project UpLift a Boost s the Florida recipient of the J.Jill Compassion Fund grant, the WRC can bolster its Employment + Empowerment workshops—the cornerstone of Project UpLift, which includes counseling, job training and education, financial planning—programs that have enabled this single mother of five to improve her life.

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ON THE COVER

Felicia Navigates Towards Her Destination — and Beyond

My greatest blessing — ever — was learning about the WRC. When my kids were in summer school at Alta Vista Elementary (AVE), I participated in their 2GEN program, a program supported by the Community Foundation of Sarasota County, which strengthened my parenting skills. 2GEN led me to one of its partners, the WRC, and its Project UpLift program,” Felicia explains. “An Alta Vista social worker doubted I would be a good fit because of financial burdens and parenting challenges. Lucky for me, she changed her mind when she saw how motivated I was.” “The 2GEN program led me to one of its partners, the WRC, and Project UpLift,” Felicia continues, beaming. “I began meeting with a phenomenal WRC case manager, Regina Morris.” Determined to succeed, Felicia has learned to budget effectively, cope with stress, and achieve her educational goals. “WRC’s financial support — through scholarships — has helped me pursue my nursing goals. And now that I am a Licensed Practical Nurse, I’m one step closer to reaching the next rung on my ladder: becoming a Registered Nurse.”

Felicia continues: “Regina shared an entire year of blood, sweat, and tears. She was my backbone when things got tough—through the good, bad, and ugly. She still counsels me about next steps—listening and encouraging me.” Passionate about nursing, Felicia was a home health aide for 18 years and wanted to challenge herself to do more. When she learned through the 2Gen program of the practical nursing course offered at Suncoast Technical College (STC), she jumped at the opportunity to participate. Felicia has achieved the following, one stepping stone at a time. • GED Graduation: While working as a CNA in the evenings and on weekends, she received her GED—on her first try—through STC in 2016. • IV Therapy Certificate: While waiting to take the State of Florida’s Licensing Exam and studying for the LPN exam, Felicia enrolled in the STC class, becoming certified. • LPN: Felicia graduated from the STC Practical Nursing Program in August 2017 and passed her boards in

Felicia and her WRC Case Manager, Regina Morris 2018 - again on her first attempt. Felicia is working full time at Sunshine Meadows, a Sarasota assisted living facility.

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Felicia’s Future Knows No Bounds hen does Felicia have time to study? Fervent about attaining her goals, she studies after her children are asleep. “My children, their future, and my education are all important. I manage to fit everything in. In fact, I never missed a day of school while enrolled in my LPN program at Suncoast Technical College,” she says proudly. According to Regina, “She’s been a role model for her children, who have seen her studying late into the night, as they go to bed. They have even wanted to help her study, using her flash cards. Felicia wants to show not only her children but the people in her neighborhood that with hard work and determination, you can make improvements in your life.” Mary Tucker, AVE’s Parent Education Navigator for 2GEN, echoes Regina’s praises: “Felicia Phillips is a very motivated, caring individual, who has worked hard to achieve her goals of becoming an LPN. We are very proud of her and all her accomplishments. We know that she will continue to thrive in all that she does and look forward to seeing where her hard work will take her.” Epitomizing WRC, this J.Jill MyWRC “Woman of the Quarter” reflects on 2018: “I think this year is going to be one to remember—the most memorable. Things are looking up for me.”

MYWRC.ORG

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VOLUNTEER

Kim Roden: Helping Women Navigate the Path to Empowerment SANDY CHASE - WRC Volunteer, Writer and CoAuthor of The Revolutionary War

Kim is the quintessential listener, whether as a Women’s Resource Center (WRC) Peer Resource Advisor (Peer Advisor) or Mentor. In June 2014, Kim started volunteering as a Peer Advisor. Since then, she has been nurturing hope—and more importantly— helping clients create a plan that turns chaos into action. In 2016, she expanded her volunteer role and began to mentor clients who were seeking career changes and participating in the employment programs at the WRC. “My favorite part of being a peer advisor is helping women determine their transitional paths. I see my job as affirming our clients’ choices and their new directions. One of the the most important services the WRC provides is nonjudgmental listening.” Kim’s work is inspired by Maya Angelou quote, “People may forget what you say. But they will never forget the way you made them feel.” Kim recently provided the “moment for mission” at a WRC board

Avid arts participants, she and her husband are season ticket holders at the Asolo Repertory and Florida Studio theatres and the Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe.

KIM RODEN

meeting. Our CEO, Ashley Brown, recalls a particular comment that Kim made that uplifted the entire board, “If the WRC didn’t exist, we would have to create it! We make a difference in our clients’ lives every day.” It is that passion and commitment that makes Kim an effective peer and mentor to her clients at WRC. Aside from Peer Advising and Mentoring, Kim is a reading tutor at Gulf Gate Elementary School. She also tutors at the Literacy Council of Sarasota, teaching adults for whom English is a second language. During her “free” time, Kim takes advantage of the YMCA and the Lifelong Learning Academy affiliated with the Ringling College.

Upon retiring from both the public and private sectors in the Twin Cities area of Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN, Kim decided that her city government experience and telecommunication-journalism expertise would be an asset in her future volunteer endeavors. “My interests include building and enhancing the community.” Those interests are being realized when the WRC client walks through the door. When Kim is asked whether she taps into her impressive career, when offering advice to WRC clients, “It’s more about attitude and problem solving for the individual, who might need to stand back and see her life from a broader perspective.” Kim expands on three factors she feels are vital in making a Peer Advisor effective: • Assessing efficiently and compassionately the primary

“When you listen, you give one a sense of importance, hope, and love that he or she may not receive any other way. Through listening, we nurture and validate the feelings one has, especially when he or she experiences difficulties in life.” H. Norman Wright 6

MyWRC MAGAZINE • 941-256-9721


reason for the visit. • Assuring the client that they have the tools to help themselves and that they are already halfway to their destination by virtue of sitting in her chair and asking for help. • Jointly developing a “roadmap,” a one-page set of action steps, the client will implement as a result of consultation. “We generally have one hour in which to listen and learn of the client’s reason(s) for the visit.”

According to Kim, “The client must believe that the Advisor will protect their confidentiality, listens without judgment, and wants to help them move from their current state to their desired state.”

Through critical listening, the Peer Advisor attempts to discern from the client’s story what their challenges are and how they might address them. In Kim’s experience, the three biggest challenges are related to housing, divorce, and employment. “It always comes back to listening— not commiserating—and certain necessities take priority: Is the client in danger of losing her housing or is she already homeless, for example. As a Peer Advisor/ Mentor, I find that employment is critical, especially for those women new to the area.” When asked what’s been most challenging as a Peer Advisor, Kim says that it’s imperative not to impose your solutions. “For example, I didn’t think one of my clients had the stamina to start a new job because of physical and

I ALWAYS WANT TO LEAVE THE CLIENT WITH ONE KEY THING SHE MAY NOT HAVE HAD WHEN SHE MADE HER APPOINTMENT, WHICH IS HOPE AND A PLAN. THE PLAN THAT IS DEVELOPED IS AN IMPORTANT FIRST STEP TO A NEW FUTURE.

The goal of the meeting is to build a road map, based on available community resources so that the client can move forward.

emotional limitations. Although I suggested she be evaluated first by a physician, she did not agree. She believed a new job would help her feel better. Not dwelling on what I thought would be the answer, we quickly transitioned to job possibilities.”

Kim is emphatic when she says, “I always want to leave the client with one key thing they didn’t have when they came to their appointment, a plan. The plan that is developed during the advisor meeting is an important first step toward a new future.” Client testimonials abound as to how Kim has helped transform bleak presents into promising futures: “I am pleased to report that I am officially employed doing MyWRC.org

curriculum enrichment (aka “activities”) at an assisted living facility. I’m grateful to all who have encouraged me —with a particular shout out to the skillful saints at the Women’s Resource Center.” Another client says, “I was offered the job... All your hard work paid off. It’s not enough to say thank you. I only hope you know how very appreciative I am to you.” All of these success stories started with the first appointment with a Peer Advisor like Kim. Peer Advising appointments are available at all of our three Centers. If you know someone who needs a little help, please encourage them to connect with us 941-256-9721. If you are interested in a rewarding volunteer opportunity, please email us at Volunteers@MyWRC. org. Writer Sandy Chase has been a US Government communications officer, editor, technical writer, and writing instructor. Sandy directed the writing training program at the CIA, and taught grammar and punctuation as an adjunct professor at the University of Virginia. 7


PROGRAMMING: MY MONEY

Sandwich, anyone? CARING FOR BOTH YOUR CHILDREN & PARENTS

JOANNE FABEC

Multi-generational households are on the rise, and caring for your child’s needs are just as important as caring for your parents’ needs under the same roof. With an aging population being diagnosed with diminishing cognitive abilities, diabetes, arthritis, and congestive heart failure, the reliance of family to take care of them has never been more prevalent. As we live longer, the average age of a member of the “Sandwich Generation” is increasing. More are sending children off to college, only to turn around to start caring for their parents. While some men are tasked with this responsibility; more often than not, women are the family managers. Juggling working, parenting our children, and taking care of our parents produces financial and emotional stress. My personal situation came about through no fault of my mother’s. I grew up in England and had a wonderful childhood. At the age of 38, my mother was widowed. As with many who divorce or lose their partners, my father had handled everything, including paying the bills, balancing the checkbook and managing the investment portfolio. I was 13, my brother 10 – my mother had to learn very quickly how to financially manage the household and her personal affairs. With help from friends and family, my mother slowly learned how to keep our small family afloat.

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MyWRC MAGAZINE • 941-256-9721


FROM JOANNE

Financial strain is the worse, but armed with education and the right information, this uncomfortable strain can be lessened. Jump forward a number of years, I moved to the United States, got married and gave birth to a daughter in 2001. Being a working mom, I suggested to my mother to consider living with us in the US to assist with the care of her granddaughter – she could travel back to the UK when necessary. I wanted the person who cared for me to be part of my children’s lives. She agreed and officially retired. My mother traveled back and forth to the UK several times a year. Three years after being with us, my mother shared her dismal financial situation. She could no longer continue traveling to the UK. To me this was a shock, as I assumed she was financially secure. Unfortunately, this was not the case. Several years after my father died, she received some very bad financial advice and decisions were made on her behalf that left her with a fraction of my father’s wealth. The so-called “advisors” had taken advantage of her and her trust. I asked if she would consider moving permanently to the US and live with my family. We became a “Sandwich Generation” Family. I recently read that the White House has noted that “An estimated 38 million Americans provide unpaid care to an aging relative, including approximately 23 million caregivers with jobs and 12 million who are also caring for their own

(living with you or not) who needs care such as with Alzheimer’s, children.” cancer, heart disease or just needs Experiences like my mother’s fueled frequent trips to the doctor’s office, my desire to be a Financial Advisor. WRC has the means and resources Her perspective also enables me to to assist or refer you to a partner agency to help. I have personally help and assist women who have used their services when dealing experienced the loss of a spouse, with my own divorce. are facing divorce, or other similar life experiences. I want to ensure The friendships and people I met at women are not taken advantage of WRC remain significant figures in the way my mother was. It is my my life today. Whatever issue you’re passion and mission to educate facing, you’re never alone when you and bring financial insight and turn to WRC. information to those in these situations. Many of my clients are the “Sandwich Generation,” and many have similar stories. Planning and awareness is vital to making the best of the situation. Sometimes this is forced, other times it is planned. Either way, in some situations, having your parent(s) come home to live with you puts a strain on even the best relationships. Financial strain is the worst, but armed with education and the right information, this uncomfortable strain can be lessened. The importance of having a support structure is vital. Most women heal themselves through sharing their experiences. The Women’s Resource Center staff is trained to listen and advise on a plan. The circle of support and their outreach into the community is far reaching. Whether you are faced with a parent

MyWRC.org

Joanne Fabec has two daughters, and enjoys life in Sarasota, including all the outdoor activities available in such a beautiful part of the world.

Joanne is a financial advisor who builds lasting relationships with her clients by inspiring and motivating them to do what is most suited for their financial future. By “uncomplicating the complicated,” her mission is to help organize and simplify the complicated and busy financial lives of affluent investors. Originally from Canterbury, England, she moved to the United States in 1995, working in the Health Insurance industry. In 2005, Joanne joined a successful independent financial advisor practice and in 2014 she joined The Gress Lodge Group. RBC Wealth Management, a division of RBC Capital Markets, LLC, Member NYSE/FINRA/SIPC. Non-deposit investment products offered through RBC Wealth Management are not FDIC insured, are not a deposit or other obligation of, or guaranteed by, a bank, and are subject to investment risks, including possible loss of the principal amount invested.

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Karen R. Koenig, LCSW, M.ed. RESOURCES:

MY LIFE

Enhance Your Life:

7 BENEFITS OF MENTAL HEALTH COUNSELING

Did you know that WRC offers affordable mental health counseling at all three Centers? Below, Karen Koenig, who provides counseling in our Sarasota facility, shares her perspective on the benefits of mental health counseling. The thought of seeing a mental health counselor may conjure up images of re-opening childhood wounds or pouring your heart out to a virtual stranger who says little and fails to help you resolve your problems. As a clinician with 30-plus years of experience and someone who’s been both client and therapist, I can assure you that counseling has a great deal to offer. Here are seven ways that counseling can enhance your life: 1) Improving relationships: Many women come to counseling to learn how to deal with problematic relationships—a controlling mother, alcoholic father, back-talking or unmotivated teenager, depressed spouse, or critical boss. Sometimes relationship problems are acute, such as when your partner or spouse gets diagnosed with a serious medical condition or when your daughter announces that she’s pregnant and dropping out of college. Other times, problems are chronic, such as wanting to leave an abusive partner or learning how to manage work and child-rearing as a single parent. 2) Skill-building: Life skills are adaptive strategies for surviving and thriving in the world. None of us have a complete set, because the people who taught us had some deficits from their own upbringings. Counseling can teach you skills you didn’t even know you lacked, or enhance ones that you’ve been struggling to improve for decades. Skills include establishing and maintaining boundaries with others, balancing work and play, building self-esteem and self-confidence, setting and reaching goals, living consciously, managing depression, anxiety and other troubling emotions. 3) Substance abuse: Women often come to counseling because they want to kick a bad habit such as alcohol, drugs, over-spending or disordered eating. They know what they’re doing is unhealthy, and may have unsuccessfully sought help, or have struggled to clean up their act on their own. Counseling offers psychoeducation about many types of substance abuse, as well as the support needed to move on from plateaus 10

MyWRC MAGAZINE • 941-256-9721


and relapses. It provides strategies to reduce stress and teaches new practices to eliminate unhealthy habits.

also be times of renewal. Speaking with a trained, unbiased counselor about your options and challenges can be a game-changer.

4) Depression, anxiety and personality disorders: Many women who come to counseling suffer from depression or anxiety, diagnosed or undiagnosed. Or, they may have personality disorders involving impulsivity or difficulty being alone. Counseling offers strategies to change their thinking and re-pattern the brain, educates them about treatment options, and helps them increase both formal and informal support. For a woman who’s been unhappy for decades (maybe even since childhood), counseling can be truly eye-opening because she never realized she suffers from a mood or personality disorder. Counseling teaches her how to manage her distressing emotions and may direct to a prescriber for medication, to issue-specific support groups, and to mindful activities such as meditation and yoga.

6) Self-care: We often think of selfcare as hair cuts, massages, facials, etc... but it’s far more than that. It involves taking care of yourself inside and out. Eating well, engaging in routine medical visits and preventive health measures, getting enough “me” time, enjoying physical activity, reducing and managing stress, having fun, and finding meaning in life are all part of self-care. Unfortunately, women have been socialized to take care of others at their expense and to put others’ needs before their own. They even may fear that doing things for themselves means being selfish. Counseling focuses on improving selfcare by examining where we fall short and finding the balance of attending to self and others.

5) Transitions: Transitions can be difficult times —going from single to married or vice versa, relocating cities, job seeking or changing careers, retiring, having a child or facing an empty nest... not to mention the challenges of aging and the death of a loved one. Transitions can produce uncertainty and anxiety, but

7) Trauma and abuse resolution: Some women may recognize trauma and abuse as part of their histories, but may be unaware of how adversely they are affected by these events in their lives For example, many women with eating and other substance abuse problems are also trauma and abuse survivors. And, no, trauma needn’t be one major incident that shaped your life such as rape, physical assault, or a family tragedy - “big T” Trauma. Instead, mistreatment MyWRC.org

in the form of ongoing or intermittent physical, sexual or emotional abuse is called “little t” trauma. Both can have a profoundly toxic effect on our lives, even decades later. In counseling, you can learn to identify abuse and trauma, to diffuse its painful memories, and to reduce the damaging impact it has on your life. If you are unfamiliar with how counseling works, let me debunk a common misperception: It does not involve a professional telling you what to do. Counseling takes many forms and is tailored to your needs and goals. Some women resolve their issues in just a few months, and for others, it may take longer. Sessions can be scheduled weekly or every other week. The goal of counseling—individual, couples, or family—is for you and your counselor to work together to help you achieve the health and happiness you so richly deserve. To learn more, or if you are interested in making a counseling appointment, please call WRC at (941) 256-9721.

Karen R. Koenig, LCSW, M.Ed., is a licensed psychotherapist, motivational speaker and international author who has specialized in the field of compulsive, emotional and restrictive eating for more than 30 years.

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a

WRC p ro g rams 2018 APRIL - JUNE

PROGRAMMING

SPECIAL SPOTLIGHT

RESOURCES OF THE WRC For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call 941-256-9721.

Peer Resource Advising

Do you need someone to listen without judging, who has the tools to guide you to needed support? We have experienced Peer Resource Advisors who help you prioritize your needs. They can refer you to the right community agencies, and/or recommend programs offered by the WRC that provide resources and information. Manatee • Sarasota • Venice Call for Appointment No fee

Mental Health Counseling WRC offers individual, couples and family counseling with fully qualified mental health professionals. Counselors have the discretion of referring clients to more appropriate treatment when it is deemed to be more beneficial for the client. Manatee • Sarasota • Venice By appointment only Fee: Affordable sliding-scale structure Individual 30-minute legal consultation on family law topics such as divorce, child support, child custody and more. At the Manatee Center, a bilingual attorney may assist with immigration matters.

Ask an Attorney

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Mentoring It can be difficult to see our goals through to the end, and sometimes we need someone to help us. This program is offered to clients who would benefit from additional support and experience from a qualified mentor. Manatee • Sarasota • Venice By appointment only No fee

Evaluating Unhealthy Relationships An ongoing educational support group about setting boundaries in relationships, making safe & healthy decisions and understanding the wide range of abusive & controlling relationships. Manatee • No fee Call 941-747-8499 to register Program coming soon to Sarasota

Support Groups Addiction Support Group For friends & family of addicts Mondays @ Manatee 6 - 8:00 pm • Fee: $2 Alzheimer’s Support Group For caregivers

2nd Thursdays @ Manatee 2:30 - 3:30pm • No fee Call for appointment in Manatee, Venice, Sarasota May 10; June 14; July 12 Fee: $10 MyWRC MAGAZINE • 941-256-9721


MYMONEY

NEW COLUMN Ask the Experts:

Advice & Support from trusted WRC sources

D R

ear Dr. Laura M. -

WRC

INBOX

I am in significant debt and I am concerned. I have listened to your podcasts and I know you have said that credit cards are evil, but I’m not sure how I would live without them. The problem is that they are taking over my life. I am in a significant amount of debt and I can’t stand it any longer. Can you help?

-- from Renee in Venice enee, I’m afraid that you are not alone in this situation. Credit cards cause a lot of problems in many women’s lives and if they are not dealt with in a timely manner, they can take on a life of their own – and make you miserable.

If you have a credit card and you pay off the balance every month in full (in other words you use it instead of carrying cash, not as a borrowing tool), great. Maybe you’re earning miles or some other benefit, and you are building solid credit history. But that is not what the credit card company is betting on. They are banking on the hope that you’ll pay the minimum balance, and unfortunately, many people do just that. The real problem is that many people do not understand how compounding interest works but even Einstein dubbed compounded interest as one of the greatest forces in the universe. Compound interest is our friend when we save and invest, but it is our enemy when we borrow. It is the idea that interest makes interest off of interest. In other words, if you are told that you are paying an 18% APR, annual percentage rate. You think that you are paying 1.5% per month. Which frankly is bad enough however that isn’t the full story. Really this is what happens: the first month, you accrue an 1.5% interest charge of $45. The second month, you accrue another $45 plus another 1.5%, 70¢ on last month’s $45 of interest. The third month, you accrue another $45 plus $1.40 from the two interest payments that you accrued the last two months... and so on. This adds up! Even though your statement says you are paying 18% APR, you are effectively paying almost 20%. Ideally you should pay that balance off as soon as you can, and if you can’t pay it off in full, then just pay as much as you can. If you need help, be careful when approaching debt settlement programs... many of these programs use fraudulent, abusive and deceptive practices. They often make promises that they cannot keep, and charge high fees which they do not disclose. Ask a lot of questions! The only place that I recommend for counseling is the National Foundation on Consumer Credit Counseling at http:// www.nfcc.org/ or call 1-800-388-2227 to speak to a counselor. Review their website since there is a lot of educational material which can be eye opening. In general, avoid quick fix counseling help. It took time to get into the place where you are, and it will take time to get out. There is no magic eraser, but WRC is here to help guide you in the right direction. For more MyMoney resources, visit My.WRC.org/blog. Dr. Laura Mattia, MBA, CFP®, CRPS®, CDFA, is the financial planning program director and professor at MUMA College Business, USF Tampa. MyWRC.org

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KARIN’S CAUSES SUPPORTS A FACELIFT FOR WRC SARASOTA The women who built WRC in both Manatee and Sarasota maintain a strong commitment to the center and our clients. It is awe-inspiring how many donors, volunteers and former staff members continue to actively support the WRC! Karin Gustafson is one of these remarkable women. She served as the Executive Director of the WRC from 1985-1990, while the board worked with renowned architect Carl Abbott to design and build the Sarasota Center. Fast forward 20 years, and Karin had an idea to once again breathe new life into a beloved Sarasota School of Architecture landmark, the Women’s Resource Center in Sarasota. In 2014, Karin founded Karin’s Causes Estate Sales to connect people to the non-for-profits special to her via the items that people love to buy. Karin’s Causes has since raised over $85,000 for local non-profits. A portion of the 2017 sale supported a refresh of the Sarasota Center. The refresh included new paint, new carpet, grout cleaning and updated electric. The entire project was funded by the 2017 Karin’s Causes Estate Sale and was matched by the Roberta Leventhal Sudakoff Foundation, private Women’s Resource Center donors, and Bill Falk/PPG Paints. Thank you to Karin, Rebecca and your entire team for your efforts to make a difference in our community!

unique BOUTIQUE

Jennings Arcade 417 12th Street West | Bradenton

HOURS

Tuesday - Friday 11 am-5 pm | Saturday 10 am-2 pm Sunday & Monday closed GIRL’S DAY OUT FIRST THURSDAY OF EVERY MONTH 14

MyWRC MAGAZINE • 941-256-9721


Latinas of WRC

Ask an Attorney

A weekly forum for Latina women to discover skills, build self-confidence and find their own paths to success.

Individual 30-minute legal consultation on family law topics such as divorce, child support, child custody and more. At the Manatee Center, a bilingual attorney may assist with immigration matters.

Mondays @ Manatee 6 - 7:30 pm • Fee: $2 The Smart Split Attorney Rebecca Rider focuses on the Florida legal process for obtaining a divorce and other family law matters. Wednesday, May 23 @ Sarasota 10 am - 12:00 pm • Fee $10 *Call 941-366-1700 to pre-register You Are Worthy: Learning to Raise Your Own Bar Chris Florand and Denise Whalin teach you to develop the skills for improved selfconfidence, assertiveness, boundary setting and negotiation skills for handling life’s challenges. Thursdays @ Venice April 12, April 26, May 10, May 24 6 - 8:00 pm • Fee: $2 *Call 941-485-9724 to pre-register Lunch & Learn: 5 Money Questions for Women Edward Jones, Financial Advisor, Cassie Collins will facilitate this workshop and will provide lunch. Wednesday, June 6 @ Venice 12 - 1:30pm • Fee: $2 *Call 941-485-9724 to pre-register MyWRC.org

Call for appointment in Manatee, Sarasota, Venice • Fee: $10Fee: $10 Estate Planning Hal Hammond, of the nonprofit, Foundation for Financial Education (F3E), will help define the terms and simplify the process of organizing your estate plan with an easy-to-follow outline. Monday, May 7 @ Venice 11 am - 12:00 pm • Fee: $2 *Call 941-485-9724 to pre-register Advanced Social Security Planning Are you ready to take control of your retirement? We have the workshop for you! Director of Operations, Hal Hammond of the non-for-profit Foundation for Financial Education (F3E), hosts a workshop on how social security benefits are calculated, how to delay retirement credit, and much, much more. Monday, April 30 @ Venice 10 - 11:00 am • Fee: $2 *Call 941-485-9724 to pre-register 15


Career Center and Computer Tutoring Clients are invited to work in our self-help career center to conduct online job searches, work on job applications and resumes. Learn MS Word, Excel and other computer applications ($10 additional fee for 1:1 sessions). RSVP only. Manatee • Sarasota • Venice Call for Appointment Employment Coaching - FREE! Individual assistance in preparing for a successful job search. Includes resume preparation, interviewing skills and networking techniques Manatee • Sarasota • Venice Call for Appointment Employability Classes - FREE! Employment 101. Explore career opportunities. Learn basics of online job search and applications, resume building. Mondays @ Sarasota Tuesdays @ Venice

1 - 3:00 pm 11 am - 2:00 pm

Personality in the Workplace. Identify strengths and opportunities through a personality profile. Learn about the different personalities and how to work more effectively with them. Tuesdays @ Sarasota

1 - 3:00 pm

Job Seeker Networking Group. Join us for ongoing jobseeker support, networking in multi-media format and featured guest speakers. Topics vary each week. Wednesdays @ Sarasota 1 - 3:00 pm Employment CPR - FREE! A one-day workshop that encompasses most of our Employability topics in a classroom setting. Geared to help clients gain pertinent skills and information necessary to jumpstart their job search. 2nd Wednesdays @ Sarasota 10 am - 3:00 pm May 9, June 13, and July 11 16

MyWRC MAGAZINE • 941-256-9721

CAREER CLOSET

The Career Closet offers professional clothing, shoes and purses. Clients may visit the closet once every 6 months and select up to 5 complete outfits, 2 pair of shoes and one purse. Sarasota & Manatee only HOURS Mondays - Thursday 9 am - 4 pm Fridays 9 - 11:30 am

“Walking into a job interview can be very intimidating; having the right clothes for my interview made a big difference. Thank you for the Career Closet!” Wendy M.


WRC’s Wonder Women

WHAT IS A WONDER WOMAN? WRC celebrated its first class of Wonder Women in honor of the Manatee Center’s 25th anniversary in 2015. The community liked the idea so much that we have continued the tradition. In 2017, we expanded our Wonder Women to include Venice and Sarasota! These Wonder Women are female leaders within our community who have made outstanding contributions in volunteer and/or professional activities in the areas of Business, Community Leadership, Education, Healthcare, Entrepreneurship, or Lifetime Achievement.

2018 Renaissance Legacy Luncheon Chair Jaime Aymerich with event committee members Greer Ferguson, Kelly Davis Strausbaugh, Dylan Howell, Kaylea Schule, and Tiffany Birakis

We celebrated our inaugural Wonder Women of Sarasota at our Renaissance Legacy Luncheon on March 20, 2018, inducting Teri A Hansen, Emily Walsh and Janice Zarro into this special circle. In November 2017, we honored the inaugural Venice Wonder Women, Wendy Deming, Liz Maggio and Sharon Monk. Pictured below are the 2017 Manatee Wonder Women, Susie Bowie, Amanda Horne, and Dr. Jan Pullen; while the 2018 Manatee Wonder Women will be honored at the Founders’ Legacy Luncheon on April 26, 2018. Who will be this year’s honorees? You’ll have to join us to find out!

Manatee

Susie Bowie, Amanda Horne, Dr. Jan Pullen

Guest speakers, WRC clients Alayna Chavez and Felicia Phillips

Venice

Sharon Monk, Wendy Deming, Liz Maggio

MyWRC.org

Sarasota

Teri A Hansen, Janice Zarro, Emily Walsh

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YOGA

Book Club Enjoy reading? We host monthly Book Club meetings at two of our Centers. A list of books being read at the Manatee Center Book Club may be found at MyWRC.org. Interested in starting a book club in Sarasota? E-mail Program Director, Chris, at CBraun@MyWRC.org. 1st Thursdays @ Manatee May 3, June 7, July 5

1-2:00 pm OR 7-8:00 pm Fee: $2

3rd Mondays @ Venice May 21, June 18, July 16

1-3:00 pm Fee: $2

Astrology - Journey to your Well-Being Certified astrological consultant, Diane Eppler Adams, shows you how to use astrology on your journey to physical and emotional well-being. Provide your birth date, place and exact time of birth when you register to receive a copy of your personal chart. Pre-registration is required, call (941)-256-WRC1 (9721). Wednesday, June 13 @ Venice • 2 - 4:00 pm Fee: $10 Meditation Guided Meditation. Whatever your personal situation is, meditation can help you feel greater calm and inner peace. Access your “inner voice” or guide, which helps quiet the mind so you can listen to your heart. By listening to our heart, we can experience greater peace and better health. 4th Thursdays @ Manatee 3rd Wednesdays @ Venice Apr 18, May 16, Jun 20 Apr 26, May 31, June 28 11 am - 12:00 pm 5:30 - 6:30 pm Mary Conway Mary Onna Bode Fee: $2 Fee: $2

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MyWRC MAGAZINE • 941-256-9721

Open to all! Please bring a mat and other yoga instruments. POWER YOGA Tuesdays @ Manatee 8:15 - 9:30 am • Fee: $5 GENTLE YOGA Wednesdays @ Manatee 5:30 - 6:30 pm • Fee: $5 INTERMEDIATE YOGA Saturdays @ Manatee 9 am • Fee: $5 ALL LEVELS YOGA Mondays, Tuesdays, Fridays 9 - 10:30 am @ Sarasota • Fee: $5 Y12SR: Yoga 12 Step Recovery A 12-step-based discussion and yoga practice that is open to anyone dealing with their own addictive behavior or affected by the addictive behavior of others. This is an open and inclusive group. All A’s are welcome. Wear comfortable clothing. Saturdays @ Manatee 11 am - 12:30 pm • Fee: Donation Lunch Bunch Have you recently moved here, changed jobs, or want to make new friends? Join us to foster camaraderie and support, and help you through transition. A different restaurant is chosen weekly. If you are interested in starting a Lunch Bunch in Manatee or Venice, please e-mail Program Director, Chris Braun at CBraun@MyWRC.org. Thursdays @ Sarasota 11:30 am - 1:00 pm Fee: Donation


MyWRC.org

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Manatee

1926 Manatee Avenue W. Bradenton, FL 34205

Sarasota

340 S. Tuttle Avenue Sarasota, FL 34237

Venice

530 US-41 Bypass S. #5A Venice, FL 34285

941-256-9721

Corporate Partners

IRISH PUB & MARTINI BAR

BMO Harris Bank | JB Templeton Consulting | Mark Kamin & Associates | Tropicana Air & Energy | Office Professionals | Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, Inc. | Southern Greens Pest Control

Save the Dates APR

26 MAY 01 OCT 18 NOV 02 NOV 30

FOUNDERS’ LEGACY LUNCHEON Manatee GIVING CHALLENGE Crowd-Funding Online HANDBAGS & HAPPY HOUR Lakewood Ranch FALL LEGACY LUNCHEON Venice DÉJÀ BLUES Downtown Bradenton

MyWRC.org

Profile for thewomensresourcecenter

MyWRC Magazine | Spring 2018 | Volume 1, Edition 2  

MyWRC Magazine | Spring 2018 | Volume 1, Edition 2  

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