"I want to keep working, and I want to keep growing professionally."
"My name is Julia Hernández Medina, and I am 47 years old. I’m from the city of Aguascalientes, Mexico. I came to the United States in 2009. I lived in California for 3 years. Life there is very expensive and there was no opportunity to work, so my husband and I came to Houston for two weeks to try things out. We found job opportunities here, so we stayed. It’s just the two of us.
I had worked in other companies but I lost my job in May. I spent two and a half months without work. I had been working in warehouses where they process, clean, and chop fruits and vegetables. It’s very cold in there.
[Finding SER-Jobs for Progress] was a thing of fate. I was walking on the street and a lady who was at a garage sale asked me 'where are you from?' And I said 'from Aguascalientes.' And she said 'oh, I'm from there, too.' We started talking and I mentioned that I was unemployed and looking for a job. She said 'I have sent several people [to SER-Jobs for Progress]. They have found work. They always tell me that they have found work. ' And that was how I came to the SER offices.
[At SER-Jobs for Progress] they gave me very good options. I talked to [SER Community Navigator Lead] Jimmy Perez, and told him what kind of job I was looking for, since I already had some experience. And he looked for companies that fit my profile.
Jimmy even told me that I could take an English course because I cannot speak any English. And he said to me, ‘here we can help you.’ He opened an email account for me, and he was calling around to companies to see if they had job openings that matched what I wanted. I no longer wanted to work at night. You neglect your family, and you get very tired. Jimmy contacted several companies and made a list of the ones I should go to. Jimmy also helped me put together my résumé. He just gave me really great service.
One of the companies on the list Jimmy gave me is where I work now. I started there in August. I like working there because they respect you a lot. You have your schedule, and you have your break when you’re supposed to. I don’t work on Saturday or Sunday, which I really like, because I need those days to rest. I’m just very happy there.
I recommend [SER-Jobs for Progress] to several people. At work, there are ladies who say 'oh, my children don’t have jobs’' I say, 'I can give them [SER’s] address, or I can talk to Jimmy so he can interview them and see what job opportunities there are.'
I want to keep working, and I want to keep growing professionally. Keep growing and look for other options."
This story was originally in Spanish.