Growing up in Pittsburgh, Danielle was surrounded by family who struggled with mental illness and drug addiction. She fell into this same cycle.

Danielle now lives in Washington, has maintained sobriety for three years, and has a 2-year-old son.

She dreamed of providing a better future for her and her son, but never thought that it would be possible. Some of her barriers included a lack of strong family support, not making enough money, a lack of child care, single motherhood, and a felony conviction from her days battling addiction.

Danielle joined the Getting Ahead program in January 2018. She graduated from the program with perfect attendance. She admits that Getting Ahead made a huge impact on her life and provided her with the knowledge and confidence to pursue her goals. She had felt lost for a long time, and did not know there were tangible supports that could actually help her. In the class setting, Danielle also enjoyed the encouragement that she received from the other women in the program. She became ambitious to pursue her goals when she discovered that they were not hopeless dreams.

After her confidence and ambition grew, she threw herself all in—taking every step that she could to better her life. She enrolled her son in Child Care Plus, then she joined the 2GEN, Family Literacy, Post-Secondary Transitions, and Matched Savings Account programs offered at Blueprints.

With some help brushing up her skills for college, Danielle successfully began classes at the Community College of Allegheny County, working toward a BA in Psychology.

Danielle currently works as a Resident Assistant at Turning Point halfway house, supporting other women in the early stages of sobriety, while attending classes at CCAC. She plans to pursue her Master’s Degree to become either a psychiatric nurse or a counselor, so that she can use her experience to help other people.

Danielle is another great example of how Blueprints advances its mission in the community.