Mother holding up her child

Social services

Breaking the cycle of poverty for future generations

Oct 5, 2021

Meet Joweria, a single mother and refugee from Uganda. Joweria was living in a shelter during the COVID-19 pandemic and unable to find work despite having a law degree in her home country. Thanks to Up With Women, a charity that helps at-risk women build a sustainable path out of poverty, she received service navigation instruction and professional coaching, enabling her to realize her potential. 

Joweria is one of many women Up With Women assists who have experienced job loss and precarious employment due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Through partnerships with over 200 volunteer coaches across the country, Up With Women offers clients customized, one-on-one coaching and career-based workshops, predominantly presented online since the onset of COVID-19.

Through a $100,000 national grant from the TELUS Friendly Future Foundation, Up With Woman expanded its flagship career and employment-based program, helping even more women like Joweria realize their career goals and break the cycle of poverty for themselves and their children. 

Working with my coach, she helped me to understand myself and strategize on how to improve my chances of finding a job and a home and exiting poverty. She gave me the courage to persist in my search when everybody was losing their jobs.

- Joweria, former Up With Women client

Within six months of starting the Up With Women program, Joweria found work as a full-time personal support worker. She also secured daycare for her son and her own apartment. After graduating, she became a Program Coordinator at Up With Women, and today is helping women like her and non-binary people achieve the same success she did.

This pandemic hasn’t stopped us. The caseload for Up With Women’s career coaching program has tripled as a result of the global health crisis. We have moved all of our services online. And the program has continued to prove successful and grow to serve more women and non-binary folks across BC, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec.

- Lia Grimanis, CEO, Up With Women