Mathilde enrolled in Santa Maria’s youth workforce program in August 2022. At that time, she was volunteering with Refresh Collective, a local screen-printing shop, and they referred her to Santa Maria. Mathilde decided to take advantage of Santa Maria’s services and was placed with a coach to work on her professional goals. She had just lost her previous job and was in-between housing, so she did not have a long-term place to stay or a dependable source of income. Mathilde and her coach, Rylee Burke, met to discuss her interests, talents, and goals. Together they decided that she would be a good fit for the Work Experience program.

Mathilde has thrived in her internship role at Refresh Collective, so much so that she has been offered a fulltime position after her internship concludes. Over the last five months, Mathilde has continued to meet regularly with her coach and has taken advantage of additional services Santa Maria’s Workforce Development program offers, such as assistance with budgeting, financial planning, and developing a resume.

Mathilde is now living in her own unsubsidized housing, paying her bills, and managing a personal savings account. She has aspirations of moving abroad to France and continuing her education there, since French fluency is one of her many marketable skills.

When asked about her experience with Santa Maria so far, Mathilde stated, “Santa Maria connects me to resources that I either was not aware of, or had not pursued. Rylee is an expert navigator and is a good listener. She offers solid advice. All around, Santa Maria is a wonderful community service that is helping me out of poverty.” Rylee said it has been enjoyable getting to know Mathilde through the Santa Maria Workforce Development program.