Isa, a multi-racial single mom of a 14-year-old son, is an advocate and teacher who values equity, justice, and community. Prior to being selected for RISE, Isa experienced financial anxiety. Isa recalls times when grocery shopping and stopping to look at her bank account to ensure she had enough money for the items in her cart. Isa also describes the physical aches she used to experience due to not having enough money. “Physically, I was having consistent pain that would last months. I was always in poor health and feeling pain.” The aches have since diminished now that she has an additional $500 coming each month. “No back pain or insane migraines. I worry less and my anxiety is now less frequent.”
To Isa, $500 a month makes a big difference. “To someone who is struggling, even while working full time, it can completely change your life.” Isa is now able to pay off medical bills that she would have been paying $20 monthly on, infinitely. Isa believes RISE sets itself apart from other programs. “Being able to receive the money directly in my bank account, really helps to eliminate the stress and the shame from using an EBT card at the store.”
Additionally, Isa can now afford a therapist as she works to build stronger boundaries. Isa strives to keep her work at work, limiting weekend work and checking emails after work hours. In addition, Isa now has an HBO max account she enjoys during the weekend. “Before it was a luxury I didn't deserve. Now I have a subscription, and I can sit and watch a show without guilt.”
"Being able to receive the money directly in my bank account, really helps to eliminate the stress and the shame from using an EBT card at the store."