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A Complicated Life: The road less traveled

In December Yolanda's public aid benefits were reinstated and though she doesn't have a job currently, she is still in the No Limits program and continues to meet with Woodard on a regular basis. 

An Ameren IP representative was able to ignite the pilot light and Davis and her family have heat.

Since Jan. 10, Yolanda has been attending adult education classes on a weekly basis and she has also enrolled in Even Start, an educational program for mothers and their children.


Four days per week the program provides door - to-door transportation for Yolanda and her two-year-old son. While she is taking APL classes at Urbana Adult Education, her son is in a preschool class in Champaign.


As a part of the Even Start program, Yolanda and other mothers interact with their kids in the preschool setting at certain times during the week, where they read to and focus on the children in order to promote bonding between parent and child.


And, at age 35, she remains committed to complete her high school course work and to participate in graduation ceremonies as a member of the Urbana High School class of 2010.


"A lot of people [said] '˜why don't you go to Parkland to get your GED?' I don't want to take the easy way. I want my cap and gown '“ the things I should have had in high school. I want to show my kids that everything you want in life you have to work hard at it.'


UPDATE: Aug. 16, 2010



Yolanda Davis, who enrolled in the Urbana Adult Education program in 2009 in order to receive her high school diploma, learned she was pregnant with her sixth child during the spring semester, but did not let the pregnancy interfere with her goal to graduate on time. She gave birth to her daughter, Londyn, a week before graduation, and on May 30, received her diploma as a member of Urbana High School's class of 2010. (Slideshow

In August Yolanda took a placement exam as part of the Parkland College enrollment process. She plans to study either criminal justice or to explore a major related to the medical field. Yolanda realizes she will need the continued support of others in order to balance the demands of being a student as well as a single parent.



By Will Atwater/For CU-CitizenAccess







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