Melva Trask went from standing on a roof in the flood stricken state of Louisiana waiting to be rescued with 14 members of her family, to standing on her own two feet in Arkansas. Melva is a Katrina survivor that found purpose and hope in the state of Arkansas when Katrina and the floods in Louisiana swept over her life. Being clothed in confidence, determination, and motivation, Melva embraced whatever help offered her and networked to find resources available to her to help get back on her feet. Despite the uncertainty of what life held for the future, Melva was determined to make the best of a bad situation.

FEMA and the Department of Human Services referred Melva to the IDA program. She with four other family members quickly responded and enrolled in the program. Melva’s resolve to restore order and purpose to her life was manifested in her awe inspiring motivation. Melva attended all of her classes and saved all of her money in the minimum amount of time allowable.

Melva used her savings and match through the IDA program to continue her education in Addiction Studies at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Masters Program. Melva plans to become an Addiction Counselor to the incarcerated population. She completed 150 hours at the Community Resource Agency as an intern. This treatment facility under the Arkansas Department of Corrections is a modified therapeutic community organization for substance abusers. After completing her internship with this organization, they too being impressed with her confidence, determination and motivation, offered her a permanent position. Melva now works in the capacity of Prevention Resource Coordinator for Community Resource Agency.

Out of devastation and uncertainty, great achievement has come. And the Asset Builders program is honored to have served Melva through this time of transition and helped to bring her to a place of direction. Melva has gone from being displaced to being in the right place.

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