EAST ORANGE, NJ — Today we highlight one of the many success stories created by a local nonprofit agency. East Orange is fortunate to have a number of very fine nonprofit agencies providing vital social services for community residents. One of those organizations is Sierra House; and as  demonstration of the effectiveness of this agency we invite you to meet Andrea, a proud Sierra House resident. 

Before the Sierra House, Andrea was moving from one short-term shelter to another with her two sons, often living in overcrowded, coed environments where she did not feel safe or supported. At the time of entry, she struggled with her past traumatic experiences and low self-esteem. However, since living at the Sierra House, Andrea has begun her healing process by opening up about her past trauma and working through the pain associated with it.  

Last year, Andrea enrolled in Essex County College as a social science major.  She has maintained high grades and has secured her place on the Dean's List. Andrea is committed to earning her degree early and has pushed herself to attend school during summer sessions. She would like to complete her associate degree and then attend Rutgers University to obtain a bachelor's degree.

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Today, Andrea has a full-time job at Whole Foods and is one class away from graduation. She has taken the necessary steps to improve her credit, has received her driver's license, and is working to fulfill her dream of being a homeowner. Most importantly, Andrea wants to set a positive example for her children and prove to them that they can succeed despite adversity. She now has the stability and faith in herself to do just that. 

Sierra House is also proud to report that Women of AT&T: Women With A Vision, North Jersey Chapter selected Andrea as one of their 2019 scholarship recipients awarding Andrea a scholarship in the amount of $1,000 to assist with her college education.

Sierra House Inc

Sierra House Inc. is a nonprofit organization committed to improving the prospects of individual achievement for youth, low to moderate income families, and homeless young adults through housing, education, and community services, and thereby contributing to the long-term stability of our community.  Their programs provide enriching life experiences that encourage and challenge youth to excel in their development, support neighborhood stabilization and encourage homeownership.