Breaking the Cycle of Poverty through Education

This year, the Women’s Caucus of ALAJ continues its mission of community outreach. Last year, the Women’s Caucus began a community outreach effort to provide assistance to the Christian Women’s Job Corp. The Christian Women’s Job Corp (“CWJC”) is a non-profit, faith-based agency where women in need are equipped for life and employment through job-readiness classes, computer classes, GED training, Bible study, and mentoring from other women. With the support of area volunteers, the goal is to break the cycle of poverty.

This year, Women’s Caucus of ALAJ will continue its goal to assist CWJC in its mission to help women in need break the cycle of poverty in their lives. Last year, we organized a clothing drive where we asked membership to gather professional attire and accessories which were provided to CWJC participants. The clothing drive was held in conjunction with the Mid-Winter Seminar. We also had a breakfast and fundraiser during which funds were raised for the general fund to go towards opening new sites in Alabama. I want to express my sincere thanks to all of last year’s contributors.

This year, the Women’s Caucus will assist CWJC with its largest need this year, which is scholarship funding. The Women’s Caucus will be raising money in support of the CWJC Scholarship fund at the 2010 Mid-Winter Conference, January 28 – 30 at Ross Bridge in Birmingham. The scholarship fund was started in 2003 when one of the graduates from the very first CWJC class was accepted into nursing school. CWJC had helped this participant get a grant for college but there were several items required for nursing school which were not covered by the grant, such as uniforms, a stethoscope and a watch. She was an excellent student but could not afford these extra things. That participant was Rena Stoops and CWJC named the scholarship The Rena Stoops Scholarship. Rena finished nursing school and worked as an LPN for five years and she is now back in school working on her RN.

The scholarship is for $500.00 and can be used to help pay tuition or purchase books and supplies. Each participant has the opportunity to apply for the scholarship. Delilah Martin received the scholarship in May of 2006. She was a single mom with two little boys and working at the Minuteman Service Station to support her family. She now has a degree in business management and works at Snead College. Vanessa Lewis began CWJC in 2007. She was 47 years old, single, did not graduate high school and had a 2 year old daughter. Vanessa worked really hard in the GED classes and passed the test on her first try. She is now a student at Snead State and she made the Dean’s List last quarter.

The Rena Stoops Scholarship has been a great asset to these and many more CWJC participants. The Women’s Caucus of ALAJ is calling upon the membership to assist in raising funds for this scholarship program. For more information concerning CWJC, you can visit their website at The website will provide you with CWJC sites in your area, as well as a detailed “needs- lists” for this organization. Feel free to contact me directly at, or by telephone at (256) 539-1990, if you have any questions about this program. I urge the readers to encourage others to join the Women’s Caucus of ALAJ. By being involved, our members can be a force for positive change. This attitude has been a driving force for this organization. I hope to see you at the Mid-Winter Conference.