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As a mom, quiet time is golden. It gives us an opportunity to unwind and just be still. It is also an important moment of the day to connect with God. 

 Mother Teresa said, “We need to find God, and he cannot be found in noise and restlessness. God is the friend of silence…We need silence to be able to touch souls.” We need quiet time! Jesus gave us a perfect example of spending time with God. Here are a few tips on getting your quiet time each day based on Jesus’ example: 

  1. Determine the best time of the day 

Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed” Mark 1:35 

For some people, early morning before everyone is awake is their best chance at having quiet time. Other may want to consider your lunch break or while the baby is sleeping or at night after the kids have fallen asleep.

Need more encouragement? Check out our free podcasts and video channels HERE!

  1. Pick a place 

But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed Luke 5:16 

You don’t have to go build a prayer room. You might just clear out a corner space in your home or go in the closet or sit outside on your patio. Where ever you decide, be sure that it is away from all distractions (kids, electronic devices, laundry, beeps and noises).  

  1. Tell your kids 

Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, ‘Sit here while I go over there and pray” Matthew 26:36 

If your kids are older, you may need to let them know about the time your need and the place you have chosen. Their cooperation will make a huge difference for you. 

Make it a priority to have quiet time alone with God – praying, meditating, reading His Word and listening for His voice. Whether you do it in the morning or night, in a prayer room or bathroom, God will honor the time you spend becoming intimately aware of Him. You will begin to see that every area of your life including parenting becomes more manageable. As you take time to “re-fuel”, your peace and joy will overflow.  

The Life of a SIngle Mom exists to see that no single mom walks alone.

The Life of a Single Mom is a nonprofit organization committed to seeing no single mom walk alone. The organization serves single mothers of all stories and ages with a variety of programs, including support groups, life-mapping, resource referrals, online chats, home improvement projects, and more. For more info, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com

The post How to Get Your Quiet Time by Jennifer Maggio appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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Today I want to talk to all the single mothers who are dealing with the fact that your child’s father either does not actively participate in your child’s life or is absent from your child’s life.  Although both situations can be difficult, I want to encourage you that neither is hopeless.  So how do you deal with the fatherless factor?  How can you help your child deal with the fact that their father is not in their lives? 

 

Keep a positive perspective.  Know and help your child recognize that although his/her biological father may not be active in their life that they do have a spiritual Father in the Lord.  Now girls, I am not trying to be overly spiritual or down-play the importance of a child having a relationship with their father.  As a former single mom of 16 years, I know all too well the emotional pain a child can go through when their father is not around.  The fatherless factor is a real situation that our children go through.  However, the truth is that, regardless of the status of your child’s relationship with their father, the Creator of Heaven and Earth cares for them.  When the emotions come do your best to keep a positive perspective and remind your child of the unfailing love of their Heavenly Father. 

 

Acknowledge emotions.  Children dealing with an absent parent can experience a vast array of emotions.  Be sure that when your child displays emotions that you adequately acknowledge how your child is feeling.  Talk to them about what they are feeling.  If they do not feel comfortable talking to you ask if they have someone in their life they feel comfortable talking with.  If they do not have such a person perhaps consider taking them to talk to someone.  This could be a pastor at your church or a licensed counselor. 

 

Pray.  Do not underestimate the power of a praying Momma!  Prayer is a powerful tool the Lord has given to each of us.  Unfortunately, sometimes it is an underutilized weapon in our arsenal.  James 4 tells us we have not because we ask not.  Pray big prayers.  Pray for God to heal your child’s hurting heart.  Pray for God to turn the heart of your child’s father.  Commit to praying regularly and see what happens. 

The Life of a SIngle Mom exists to see that no single mom walks alone.

The Life of a Single Mom is a national organization headquartered in Baton Rouge, Louisiana that focuses on seeing no single mom walk alone. The organization serves more than 50,000 single mothers annually from around the United States and more than 2,000 in Greater Baton Rouge through their support group network, outreach event, educational classes, online communities, and more. For more information, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com

The post “Fatherless Factor” appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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The Life of a Single Mom Conference Will Take Place in Pensacola This Weekend

Baton Rouge, Louisiana – 10:00am CST.  Please be advised that after careful consideration, The Life of a Single Mom has decided to continue with our Single Moms’ Conference this weekend, being held on Saturday, July 13, 2019 at Olive Baptist Church.  We have monitored the weather closely over the last several days and will continue to do so.  After much discussion with our staff, stakeholders, board of directors, and Olive Baptist Church staff, we do feel the event is far enough inland and eastward of the storm trajectory that attendees will be safe.

All booked speakers will be there, as originally slated. Childcare and meals will be provided.  All conference details, as originally released, are expected to remain unchanged.

However, out of an abundance of caution, we do highly recommend that any registered attendee consider not attending,  if you live in a low-lying area, an area prone to flooding, or have any personal safety concerns or reservations.  If any pre-registered attendee cannot attend due to weather, we will issue a three-month membership to Single Mom University, in lieu of attendance.  Single Mom University has over 100 life skills classes taught by nationally-renowned experts in three core areas: Parenting, Finances, and Health & Wellness.  A three-month membership is valued at $49.95 single moms and $59.95 for ministry leaders. To take advantage of that offer, simply email info@thelifeofasinglemom.com.

It is our greatest desire to make this conference a meaningful one for those who are able to attend.  However, please note that neither Olive Baptist Church nor The Life of a Single Mom or any of its stakeholders assume any risk associated with travel or attendance to the event.  We are not responsible for hotel or travel costs associated with your decision to attend.  Please make the decision that is most appropriate for your family and area.

The Life of a Single Mom is a national nonprofit headquartered in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, that exists to see that no single mom walks alone.  The organization has worked with over 1,500 churches and community groups to establish a new or improve an existing single moms’ ministry.  More than 82,000 single mothers connected to The Life of a Single Mom programs in 2018.  For more information, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com.

The post Conference Will Take Place in Pensacola This Weekend appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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Less Than 30 Days away!

Will you be among the single mothers, former single mothers, and single mom supporters across the nation who have decided to join us on the second stop in our 2019 Single Mom Conference Summer Tour in Houston, TX? Will you be at Houston’s First Baptist Church on June 15th?

Will you be sitting in the room when single mothers from around the nation gather from east, west, north, and south for one reason? Will you be there when the lights go dim and the spotlight shines on the opening number and the crowd gets excited?

Will you hear the single parenting experts from across the U.S. — the speakers who have flown in to Houston, Texas to invest in you and your single moms’ ministry team?

Will you be there to visit vendor booths? Will you come laugh and cry together?

Will you be there to hear from God, as He encourages, heals, restores, and plants dreams?

In less than 30 days….will you be there?

Join Us on the Next Stop on the Single Mom Conference Summer Tour: Houston, TX - YouTube
Want more information about what you can expect? Check out the video HERE!  Mark your calendars and we hope to see you in Houston, TX for our 2019 Single Mom’s Conference!

Can’t Make it to Houston?

Join us in Florida for the last stop on our 2019 Single Mom’s Conference Summer Tour!

Get the girls together, enjoy a great conference, then finish the weekend off catching some sun on the beach!

Get all of the details and information HERE! Hope to see you there!

The Life of a Single Mom is a national organization headquartered in Baton Rouge, Louisiana that focuses on seeing no single mom walk alone. The organization serves more than 50,000 single mothers annually from around the United States and more than 2,000 in Greater Baton Rouge through their support group network, outreach event, educational classes, online communities, and more. For more information, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com 

The post In Less Than 30 Days…Will You Be There? appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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From across the gym, I watched him walk in with her. Hand in hand and all smiles, he pointed out our 3-year-old son on the basketball court. I began to feel sick as he then pointed at our 2-year-old daughter and me. I felt tense as irrational thoughts began to move through my veins.

How your heart can sink into the depths of your stomach and lodge itself within your throat, at the same time, is a mystery I will never truly understand. All I know is that it’s a horrible, punch-in-the-gut feeling.

My immediate thoughts, full of anger and anxiety, turned to embarrassment. Comparing myself to her was something I wish I wouldn’t have done, but I couldn’t help it. I was in such a rush that morning. Why didn’t I spend more time on my hair and makeup? She was fit while I was struggling in a few areas. Her clothes, purse, and shoes were much more beautiful than anything I could afford on my small salary. And as resentment and anger pierced through my heart and heated my skin, I tried not to notice them walk over to me.

Ways to pray for tour ex. Click HERE!

He introduced her with a smirk on his face. I felt so much hate for him. She had the same name as the woman who filled up his cell phone log with late-night calls and secret conversations. The same name whom he claimed was just a “friend.” How dare he bring her here.

During the game, they exchanged a deliberate display of sickening affection. Loud whispers informed me of their shopping and dinner plans that night. All the while, we hadn’t seen a dime from him in months. His cruel and insensitive behavior left me feeling insignificant and worthless.

I wanted to scream. I wanted to throw punches. He knew flaunting this relationship would be an intentional hurt to me and leave gaping wounds. The urge to cry was so overwhelming. I wanted to run to the bathroom but knew my tears would swell and stain my face a splotchy red. I was afraid to speak for fear my words would turn into sobs. Hadn’t this man hurt me enough?

But I couldn’t do or say anything. My kids were watching.

Depression became my closest friend, and at times, my only friend. God knows I didn’t want him back. I knew in my heart he was horrible for me and my sanity, but why did it have to be this painful? Part of me wanted to start dating to rub it in his face and give him a taste of what he was putting me through. Something held me back. As the years passed, our kids watched him go through woman after woman. With me, they had stability and safety. By the time they were teenagers, he had created an environment where they had zero respect for him.

This was not the life I thought God had promised me and certainly not what I had imagined for myself. I wanted to do more. Be more. My biggest dream was always to be a mom. Working long hours to make ends meet left me with little time to be the mother I truly wanted to be.

Tired and bone-weary. I often felt I had nothing left to give. Every day, I thought I was on the verge of breaking. Was this going to be our lives day in and day out? Trapped inside this world, I knew I was ill-equipped for single motherhood. How do I move on and break free from these emotions? How do I move forward and start a new life free of his control?

The answer was simple. It was Jesus. In my heart, I knew He was always the answer. My prayer life picked up, and God started moving.

God can give you visions that will change your destiny and leave profound legacies for your children. And when that happens, manifestation is inevitable. There is no longer any room for doubt, fear, or worry. All I had to do was ask Him for it. He reminded me that even the largest of giants can be destroyed by a single stone. My giant was a toxic relationship with my ex that I needed to move on from and never repeat it again. Having lost myself somewhere along the way, I was ready to be the mother and woman Christ had destined me to be.

God pressed into my heart and soul that there was a purpose in my pain and a testimony in my healing. This was a pivotal moment for a massive life change, which I now understood can only flow straight from Jesus. People were going to hurt me, leave me, lie, betray me, and put me in a state of fear and worry. But God still says, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” That is a truth I held tightly to.

The enemy loves to use fear and go for our weakest moments. It crowds us in a corner and suffocates all rationality. It muddies the waters in our relationship with God, causing us to forget Christ’s faithfulness and His desire to propel us forward.

In 2 Timothy 1:7, God tells us that “we have not been given a spirit of fear but of power, love, and a sound mind.” And in Isaiah 26:3, it says that “you will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you.”

I knew that fear is faith in the enemy, and I had a desperate need for peace. Pushing all fear away, I kept my mind focused on Him.

I asked God for big miracles to change the hurt, devastation, and pain in my heart. A miracle to diminish the rage, anger, and depression within my soul. A miracle to fill me with grace, patience, and love for others. And a miracle for me to brave enough to speak of my past and use it to help others.

God promised me many, but for me to see, I had to obey. He questioned if I was all talk. Did I really want to experience a miracle of my own? One that beautiful testimonies are written about? I did, and so I had to ready myself for what I was asking Him for.

It started with forgiving myself. Forgive those who’ve hurt me. Pray for my enemies, big and small. Speak God’s promises over their lives instead of speaking hate and seeking revenge. See my true image through God’s eyes. And embrace this rough season in my life. All necessary components needed for God to fashion me for better and bigger things.

I stopped yearning for what wasn’t mine anymore. And I started believing that God had something far better for me. I protected and nurtured that which He had already placed in my care. I was going to serve Him out of love for the One who has always given me a way out and a way to a brighter future. My time was now. I was done wasting my life away on things and people who drew me further from Him.

God is so ridiculously good! I went through a few turbulent years after all this, but I was still standing strong. Following and trusting Jesus didn’t make things easier for me, it meant there was a promise of better things waiting for me. My kids are now grown and in college and had a happy childhood despite everything we went through. God brought my amazing husband into our lives fifteen years ago, and we live a life I had only ever dreamed of. My ex had led me to believe that this kind of life would never be possible for me. God had something much better in mind.

You may have read this far, sweet friend because you can relate to these words. I want you to know that maybe, just maybe, it’s your light and your spark that frightens you most and not the darkness you’re walking through. You may have dimmed your light and muted your voice for many years. You put him first time and time again. Tolerated his bad behavior and the negativity he’s spoken over you. You have done all of this, for so long, that you’ve forgotten “her” along the way.

There can be so much grace in letting go and so much power in choosing God. It is a gift in which there is absolutely nothing you can do to earn it. Choose Him, accept the gift, and allow your light to shine brighter than ever before. And by all means, pray enormous life-changing prayers.

Take a leap of faith…Your miracles are waiting.

The Life of a Single Mom exists to see that no single mom walks alone.

The Life of a Single Mom is a national organization headquartered in Baton Rouge, Louisiana that focuses on seeing no single mom walk alone. The organization serves more than 50,000 single mothers annually from around the United States and more than 2,000 in Greater Baton Rouge through their support group network, outreach event, educational classes, online communities, and more. For more information, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com.

 

The post When He’s Moved On by Shaylah Coogan appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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Introduction: 

Single moms, you are amazing! You are a treasure. Your kids think you hung the moon, even when they don’t tell you or act like it! These are only a few of the things you need to know!  Let’s face it. Along the journey of single parenting, the road can be winding and full of bumps and bruises. The stamina it takes to persevere over the long haul can be seemingly unattainable.  

That’s one of the reasons The Life of a Single Mom exists!  From the very beginning, it has been our goal to be a support to single moms in whatever capacity we could.  

Overview of Services Available by The Life of a Single Mom: 

That’s why we offer free weekly LIVE chats via social media on single mom-centric topics, as well as free ebooks, newsletters, articles, videos, and podcasts. We also have a national map to help you locate a single moms’ support group in your community by entering your zip code. In Greater Baton Rouge, we offer home improvement projects, exercise classes, life skills classes, and licensed counseling, all for free! Beyond that, you can also enroll in Single Mom University which is an online life skills classroom, offering more than 100 classes currently. You can apply for the National Single Mom of the Year Award, or engage in one of our many local or national events throughout the year. , 

July 13th Pensacola, Florida. Cant wait to see you. Register HERE!

We know it gets hard. We know the journey is long and some days are great, while others are ….. less-than-great!  The important thing is knowing that you are not alone! We are so grateful for organizations, like Ochsner for the dedication to provide excellent services for their single mother employees. 

5 Tips for Survival: 

And here are a few other things you’ll need to remember on those tough days: 

  1. You will make it! It may not seem like it today. There may be a battle facing you that is larger than you’ve ever seen before. The mountain could be huge. The finances may make no sense. The children may be the most disobedient and disruptive that you’ve ever seen them, but you will make it!  There is a season for all parts of your life, and even if this is the most difficult season, the children will one day grow up.  The most important thing you must recognize is that positive self-talk makes a huge impact of how you parent your children, manage your finances, and make critical decisions. You will look back and laugh at the things that cause you tears today.  You will smile at your grandchildren one day. You will be able to celebrate.  As a former homeless, single mother of two children, who are now 23 and 21 years old and both college graduates,  I can tell you that I know you will make it and you are not alone, so push through, persevere, and reach out for help when you need it.  
  2. Learn to ignore the naysayers. There will always be one or two who have negative thoughts to share. It doesn’t really matter if you are a single mom, married mom, childless person, man woman, teen, senior citizen, etc….there will ALWAYS be critics. Maybe criticism comes because someone doesn’t fully understand your journey or challenges. Maybe it comes because they mean well, but lack the knowledge necessary to provide such feedback. Or maybe it simply comes because those individuals have heartache, hardship, or bitterness of some fashion that has nothing to do with you. Whatever the case, you must learn to be cautious of what position you give to the critics in your life. Don’t grant them power over you.  
  3. Learn to forgive.  Let’s acknowledge that single motherhood is hard. Let’s acknowledge that in many cases, it isn’t where you expected to be. Maybe there are some that went through a terrible divorce and you’ve been unable to forgive the past. Maybe you were in a relationship that you hoped would last forever and it didn’t.  Maybe you had some unaddressed anger against your ex-partner. Perhaps you are mad at yourself for a decision from your past.  You must learn to forgive. Forgive yourself where you may have failed or fallen short. Forgive an ex-partner who may have treated your poorly. Forgive your children, when they’ve disappointed you.  Forgive. Learn to do it well and often. The long-term effects of living a life of forgiveness include less stress and an overall healthier auto-immune system, according to Dr. Caroline Leaf’s book, Who Switched Off My Brain?. Dr. Leaf is a world-renowned neuroscientist and best-selling author who has specialized in mind-brain research, since the early 1980s.  
  4. Manage your money well.  It doesn’t matter where you fall on the socio-economic ladder at this time. The importance of managing your money well will never be a principle that you will outgrow.  Having conducted more than 1,000 financial education consultations in Corporate America for a Fortune 500 company, I can tell you that money management, regardless of socio-economic status or current age, is critical to your future financial security.  You cannot ignore this component of your single parenting journey in hopes that it will simply “get better” or “go away”.  If you have a little, right now, and are challenged in meeting monthly financial obligations, it’s important to learn to create and stick to a budget.  Likewise, if you are not struggling financially at the present, monthly budget management is still critical as you look towards retirement, education plans for your children, and future life goals. Money management will never be an unimportant topic regardless of age or socio-economic status. Learn to manage well. Take a money management course online. Enroll in a financial education class or Single Mom University. Take the time to invest in yourself to learn money management techniques, so that money isn’t always the biggest stressor in your life.  
  5. Do not be a victim of comparison.  While there will be similarities that you share with other single mothers, there are also differences. These differences make us unique. These differences offer us perspective that others may one day find valuable in their own journeys.  They make our stories beautiful, much like a multi-colored tapestry woven together.  Your past circumstances don’t define you.  Comparison to others will steal your joy. It will immobilize you from doing the things you were created to do. You were created for greatness.  You cannot compare what someone else has accomplished professionally, what they’ve had to endure, or how your struggle may have been different.  You cannot compare the success of their children to your own, the speed of which they remarry, or how they achieve success financially. Comparison will make it difficult for you to embrace gratitude for what’s been given to you.  Everyone has their story. Everyone. Embrace your journey and pay careful attention to your own work.  

 

Closing: 

Illustrate ways attendees can get connected to The Life of a Single Mom, post-attendance. 

The Life of a SIngle Mom exists to see that no single mom walks alone.

The Life of a Single Mom is a nonprofit organization committed to seeing no single mom walk alone. The organization serves single mothers of all stories and ages with a variety of programs, including support groups, life-mapping, resource referrals, online chats, home improvement projects, and more. For more info, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com

The post 5 Things Every Single Mom Needs to Know by Jennifer Maggio appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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Jennifer Maggio, Chief Executive Officer of The Life of a Single Mom, in Baton Rouge joins a national community of more than 150 social entrepreneur-led organizations in launch of ninth Catalyst Program cohort.

Baton Rouge, Louisiana, June 27, 2019 – The Life of a Single Mom is proud to announce its Chief Executive Officer, Jennifer Maggio, has been selected to participate in Stand Together Foundation’s highly selective Catalyst Program, joining a growing national network of more than 150 nonprofit organizations working to break the cycle of poverty across America. With the addition of The Life of a Single Mom and 14 other social entrepreneur-led nonprofits in its ninth program cohort, Stand Together Foundation’s Catalyst Network now tops more than 150 top-performing organizations across 46 states.

The Stand Together Foundation Catalyst Program offers organizational and leadership development along with peer networking, with the goal of helping transformative organizations grow and scale.

“I’m excited to be part of such a prestigious honor. For some time, I’ve felt that The Life of a Single Mom was on the cusp of substantial growth. This is just another step in the right direction. I cannot wait to see what the next year holds”, says Maggio.

The Stand Together Foundation Catalyst Program brings together nonprofit organizations that have demonstrated success breaking barriers to help all people realize their potential. Through its training and mentorship program, Stand Together Foundation works with Catalyst partners to support, strengthen, and scale their work across six issue areas: Addiction and Mental Health; Financial Empowerment and Entrepreneurship; Housing and Homelessness; In-Prison, Reentry and Second Chances; Workforce Development; and Youth and Education.

“This group of catalysts is creating and implementing innovative solutions that are transforming individuals, families and communities across the country. We are excited to see how they can greater their good in the fight against poverty,” said Evan Feinberg, executive director of Stand Together Foundation.

Stand Together Foundation’s newest cohort will join 141 existing Catalysts and will kick off on September 16. The Life of a Single Mom joins 14 other high-performing nonprofits across the country:

Addiction Recovery, Mental Health & Trauma

Youth and Education

Workforce Development

In-Prison, Reentry and Second Chances

Financial Empowerment and Entrepreneurship

About Stand Together Foundation
Stand Together Foundation is breaking the cycle of poverty by supporting the creative solutions of individuals and communities around the country. Our goal is to help effective, high-performing social entrepreneurs maximize impact—to help them help more—by bringing a business-like approach to the social sector. The result is a vetted Catalyst Network of some of the most highly effective and top-performing non-profits in the U.S. that are helping people in poverty transform their lives. Learn more at StandTogetherAgainstPoverty.org.

About The Life of a Single Mom

The Life of a Single Mom is a national, faith-based, nonprofit, headquartered in Baton Rouge, Louisiana that exists to see that no single mom walks alone by working with churches and community groups to start and sustain single mom support groups. The organization reaches an estimated 83,000 single mothers each year through its 4 major programs and events. Programming includes focusing on 3 core life skills areas: Parenting, Finances, and Health & Wellness.  Services include but are not limited to: exercise classes, support group leader training, curriculum for single mom ministries, home improvement projects for single moms, o Learn more at TheLifeofaSingleMom.com.

The post The Life of a Single Mom Selected to Join Stand Together Foundation’s National Anti-Poverty Network appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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The Life of a Single Mom is a national, faith-based, nonprofit that exists to see that no single mom walks alone. Over the last decade, the organization has served more than 200,000 women and children and worked with 1,500 churches and community groups to establish single mother’s groups in varying communities.  Over the last 24 months, the organization’s staff has doubled.
As a rapidly growing organization, we are always looking for talented, high-capacity, individuals with a strong character and desire to serve single mothers.
Details on current job openings and how to apply are below.  All positions require applicants to live or being willing to move to Louisiana.  (VISTAs do not need to reside in Baton Rouge, rather somewhere in the state. Operations Manager is required to live in Baton Rouge).
Current Job Openings Include:
Operations Manager – This position holds title of second in command for a national organization. Ideal applicants will have a minimum Bachelor’s Degree or work experience in business management and strong experience in business management.  Further, applicant should have strong written and verbal communication skills, management experience, and be of high integrity and character.
Duties include:
  • Recruit, hire, and train staff
  • Human Resources Management
  • Financial Review & Oversight of the organization, e.g. Profit & Loss, Grant Management, Accounts Payable/Receivable, and Cash Flow Analysis
  • Project Management
  • Relationship-Building among stakeholders, including churches, donors, volunteer & community groups, and more
  • Public speaking
Hours:
Monday-Thursday, 8:45am-4:15pm
Fridays, 9:00am-1:00pm
Benefits include: 401k, medical/dental/vision insurance, and additional insurance coverages, such as cancer and disability policies.  Time off to include major holidays, extended holiday time off, and a generous time off schedule.
AmeriCorps VISTA positions:
What is AmeriCorps? - YouTube
AmeriCorps was implemented in 1965 to eradicate poverty in the United States by providing full-time volunteer opportunities to U.S. citizens and disseminating them to organizations to implement service projects for 365 days.  VISTAs receive a living stipend each month, health coverage, childcare assistance, and their choice of a year-end education award (approximately $6,000) or cash award (approximately $1,500).
Duties will vary, but include implementing sustainability measures for the agency:
  • Volunteer recruitment, training, and engagement
  • Grant research & writing
  • Evaluation of systems & processes within organization to implement changes & improvement
  • Social media enhancement to grow organizations
  • Donor relations, including phase implementation
  • And more.

All interested applicants are to email the following to info@thelifeofasinglemom.com:
  1. Cover letter stating salary requirements, position interested in, and why you desire to join The Life of a Single Mom team
  2. Resume
No phone calls, please. 

The post Join the TLSM Family! View Our Current Job Openings appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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Well, the holiday season is over and the Christmas trees are all coming down. The gifts have been unwrapped. The children are back in school. What many of us are left with are New Year’s Resolutions and the hopes that 2017 will be our best year ever. And many of those hopes may involve our finances. As with any goal, financial improvement in 2017 is going to come with a little work, so we’ve put together some of our hottest tips for single moms who are looking to make some changes in the new year.  

  1. Take a look at your credit report. Many of us know that our credit report is important, but did you know it can be used not only for mortgages and car loans, but future employment, credit card rates, and terms on insurance policies? Our credit is important, but often the busyness of life prevents us from keeping up with what our report says. Perhaps you’ve had a set-back with your credit due to some poor decisions or a divorce or medical issue and it is overwhelming to even look at it. Order a free credit report online and begin somewhere. There may be errors on the report that, once rectified, can immediately boost your score. There are also ways to begin the discussions with old creditors on payment arrangements or reduced payoffs.             
  2. Create a budget and stick to it. When we attempt to lose weight, what do we do? We watch what we eat and exercise. It’s pretty simple, right? The problem with many of us is that we get excited for about 32 seconds, then the real work begins! The same is true for your budget. Once you’ve created a budget on what you can spend and what you owe, stick to it in 2017!                                                                                               
  3. Save. Save. Save. There are hundreds of ways to save. Consider couponing, skipping the local coffee shop, or the daily work lunch out – just to name a few.  Even putting a small amount of money away each pay period can bring a huge sense of satisfaction and comfort.                                                                                                 
  4. Plan for Christmas now. Christmas may seem like light years away, but it will be upon us before we know it. And many lose the joy of the Christmas season, because we’ve stressed ourselves out about what we’ll buy and how we’ll pay for it. Let’s begin now with a small Christmas budget that can be used this coming season and alleviate that stress early.  

The Life of a SIngle Mom exists to see that no single mom walks alone.

The Life of a Single Mom is a nonprofit organization committed to seeing no single mom walk alone. The organization serves single mothers of all stories and ages with a variety of programs, including support groups, life-mapping, resource referrals, online chats, home improvement projects, and more. For more info, visit www.thelifeofasinglemom.com

The post 4 Financial Tips Every Single Mom Should Know appeared first on The Life of a Single Mom.

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Do you automatically dismiss the thought of owning your dream home? The truth is homeownership is not that far off! We are just going to dive right in as we discuss the myths about homeownership and how to overcome each.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are approximately 15 million single mothers in the United States (2010), raising 22 million children.  Continued research supports that homeownership provides financial security that not only safeguards a woman’s future, but establishes a sense of security and well-being among her children. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that women in the labor force have increased almost 30% over the last four decades.  Yet, women only accounted for 17% of home purchases (in 2016), according to the Women in the Housing & Real Estate Ecosystem’s website.

Many single mothers do not believe that they can become homeowners for a variety of reasons, citing such obstacles as limited income, previous credit history challenges, prior discouraging attempts, or lack of education on appropriate next steps to begin the process. Today, we’re uncovering the myths associated with single mom homeownership and how to begin your pathway to becoming a homeowner.

Single moms, you can become a homeowner this year! It starts with a plan. We’ve lined it all out for you below.

Myths About Homeownership: Myth #1: I can’t prepare a budget.

While many single moms are living paycheck to paycheck, oftentimes the cost of rent is higher than what an actual mortgage would be, if a single mom became a homeowner.  Further, with a strong budget and action plan for next steps, many single mothers find the process to homeownership much simpler than they once anticipated.

The first step in becoming a homeowner is to create a working budget based on your income and existing debt. This is crucial to understanding the amount of money you can spend on a house note. The simplest way to do this is to take a blank piece of paper and start by writing your monthly take home (net) income at the top. Underneath, list all of your recurring monthly expenses, e.g. rent, car note, child care, cell phone bill, gas, groceries, etc. Total all expenses; then subtract them from your net income.  This is a real eye-opening exercise, and allows one to see where the starting point is to eliminating expenses.

Don’t like the paper method? There are a number of free online budget calculators that can also assist with this process.

One of the first steps is keeping up with your budget. Try out this **FREE** Budget Calculator HERE! It’s easy and simple. Take it on the go and keep track!

Much like weight loss often depending on diet, exercise, and measured self-control, sticking to a budget will require planning, perseverance, and self-control. But it will all be worth it, when you receive the keys to your new home.

Are you a single mom in need of resources? Click HERE our National Resource Guide, filled with tons of resources in all areas: housing, utility assistance, and more!

Myth #2: The process is too lengthy and complicated.

Many mortgage lenders can process a home approval letter in less than 24 hours, once a potential homeowner has found their dream home. Further, the actual loan process can take as little as 14 business days and in general, a maximum of sixty business days.

The critical component to homeownership is in finding a mortgage lender with a lengthy history of ethical lending, a variety of loan products that can fit your needs, and a loan officer with a willingness to education the buyer on the process.  Like any new skill set, homeownership is only as scary as the mystery of not understanding its process. Mortgage officers will help walk you through that process. 

Note: No money should ever be charged up front to inquire about a mortgage process or get feedback on appropriate next steps to homeownership. If you have chosen a lender that does request money in the initial stages of inquiry, find another lender!

Myth #3:  My credit is too bad.

While it is true that credit history is important when exploring homeownership, experience shows us that many potential home buyers think their credit history is much worse than it actually is.  That said, we encourage all potential homeowners to take advantage of the free credit report guaranteed by the federal government each year to ascertain where you stand with your credit. Everyone is entitled to a free annual credit report to see exactly what is being reported to the three credit bureaus, Equifax, Experian, and Transunion. This can be done at annualcreditreport.com. All of the other consumer sites that offer free reports are going to give you inaccurate scores and use your personal information for marketing purposes, so don’t use them!

To find out what your FICO scores are, you simply need to contact a mortgage lender and allow them to pull your credit. It does not cost you anything. Further, a credit report pulled by a lender will be an accurate picture of exactly where you stand in regards to purchasing a home. It also allows the lender to evaluate your scores and analyze your credit with you. These reports will allow you to evaluate any inconsistencies or incorrect information that may be on your report that can be repaired, and to at least have a working knowledge of where to start. 

Whether your credit is in excellent working order or needs some work, it is important that you understand where to begin to repair it and further understand that no credit report is beyond repair.  Many mortgage officers will give you an action plan of things necessary to repair a defective credit history or at least point you in the right direction. 

Myth #4: I don’t make enough money.

While it is true that women, statistically, earn less than men, don’t count yourself out! The variety of loan programs currently available give flexibility among lenders on loan products and services that can be offered to a potential client. 

Interested in working from home? Check out the article HERE which gives a few different creative job opportunities.

In the event, your debt-to-income ratio (a percentage used to calculate your eligibility for a loan) is out of proportion, understand how close or far you are from the gap will help educate you on where you are headed. Further, there are several options to increase your income.

For example, consider picking up a second job for a limited amount of time. While this may be difficult as a single mom, it could be well worth it, if it affords you the opportunity to give your children stability. Additionally, there are many secondary business selling products, e.g. makeup, candles, skincare, that have proven to be quite successful for working mothers. Finally, with the availability of internet and home computers, the list of work from home jobs has expanded exponentially.

Like this content? Find Jeff Maggio on Single Mom University as he goes into more detail! Get enrolled HERE!

Myth #5: I have to save thousands and thousands to become a homeowner.

There are a number of specialty loan programs out there to assist low and moderate-income families in becoming homeowners. And most require only nominal down payments.  That said, there will be costs associated with your process, including closing costs (e.g. title, appraisal), inspections, and down payments. So it is important to create a savings plan to build for a future down payment or such incidentals.

Building up your savings account takes time and discipline. It is very easy to spend that savings on going out, nice clothes, and many other things that ultimately leave you not much to show for it. Consider sticking to the 10/10/80 rule. Pay God first. Pay yourself second. Pay your bills third. This says the first 10% of your income goes to tithe to your local church. This is Scriptural in both the Old and New Testament and a best-practice for Believers. The second 10% goes into a savings account. This should not be touched unless you have an actual emergency. The final 80% is what you have left to pay your bills and live off of. This can easily be done, and I have actually had many people come back to tell me they went to 10/20/70 pretty easily as well, which allows you to obviously save even faster.

Myth #6: I don’t have the time to get started on the process.

A homeowner application can often be completed with the ease and convenience of a home computer, at any time, day or night. On average, most applications take less than 15 minutes to complete.  Once the application is complete, the lender will contact you within a few business days to give you appropriate next steps, including permission to pull your credit.

Once your credit is pulled, and your score is acceptable, it’s time to look at your loan options. There are many different programs out there with different guidelines, down payment options, income requirements, and debt ratio requirements. A strong mortgage lender will take the time to evaluate all options, explain them, and keep your best interest in mind.

Myth #7: Finding the right house can be difficult.

Select a realtor that will help you find your perfect home! Their job, literally, is to comb the newspapers, websites, and various MLS listings (an internal database they have access to), to find you potential homes that meet your specifications. That’s right. You outline what you want in a home, including price range, number of bedrooms, geographic location, school district, etc. And each home selection process is unique. 

Finally, once you have followed all the aforementioned steps and are now pre-approved with a lender, you will be able to notify your realtor of the appropriate price range to search within.

Meet Our Featured Expert

Jeff Maggio has been assisting customers in achieving their homeowner dreams for almost two decades.   A marathon runner, an avid volunteer, and a strong supporter of single mothers, Jeff has built his career on honesty and crafting personalized solutions for individuals.  His portfolio of services, include first-time home buyers, jumbo loans, fixed and adjustable rate mortgages, professional loans, low-to-moderate income lending programs, refinances, construction loans, and condominium purchases. Licensed in all 50 states with Flagstar Bank, an $18 billion bank that was chartered in 1987, Jeff’s reputation precedes him. Feel free to email specific questions you may have and for special discounts,  indicate The Life of a Single Mom sent you.  You can visit  www.jeffmaggio.com to apply or for additional information.

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