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Graduates get recognized during Circles Joplin ceremony - KOAM TV 7

Graduates get recognized during Circles Joplin ceremony

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JOPLIN, MISSOURI -

"You should always work hard for what you want and you shouldn't give up"

Lessons Chantel Verren is going to pass onto her kids from her time in Circles Joplin.

"We're celebrating 12 circle leaders who are making the journey out of poverty. This is the end of their first phase of training" says David Heltzel, the director of Circles Joplin. 

The group spent the last 18 weeks gaining skills like budgeting, healthy relationships, and healthy diets.
Skills Chantel can use while raising her three kids.

"I didn't learn a lot of the basic financial literacy growing up. So it helps to get that education, just being able to start saving up for my kid's college funds and be able to raise them" says Chantel.

The Circle director says 85 people have graduated this program in the last seven years and increased their income by 74 percent since they began the program.

"The Circle's Joplin graduation certificate carries some weight. Because we've developed some relationships with some local employers and those employers will look at the candidate and look past their work history, maybe criminal history if they have that Circles Joplin certificate and say you know this is somebody that is working hard to improve their lives" says Heltzel. 

Chantel is currently in real estate school and plans to go into journalism. She leaves us with some advice for people who may be doubting their next move forward.."Even if you don't think you're going to benefit in any way, you will. No matter what, in any way you will. Whether it's finance, whether it's relationship with your friends, your kids, your education, your job, you're going to benefit in some way."

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