Eliada Homes has been awarded $50,000 by Women for Women and accepted this award on May 20, 2014 at the annual Power of the Purse luncheon celebrating women's philanthropy. Attending the luncheon was Emily Snider, Eliada's first female student in the Eliada School of Trade Arts (ESTA), for which this grant will be used to expand opportunities for women to participate in this program.
Women for Women supports programs that focus on economic self-sufficiency for women and girls in Western North Carolina. ESTA aims to do just that for young women aging out of long-term foster care, or women who have come into contact with the juvenile justice or mental health systems and are in need of a structured transitional living and vocational education program. Currently, ESTA operates a Culinary Arts program for students on Eliada's campus. ESTA students spend 50% of their time in work-study opportunities in the kitchen and cafeteria at Eliada and in community based internships in restaurants that result in permanent job placements upon graduation. Students live on campus and pay rent and utilities. These funds are saved in a trust account available upon graduation, and can total $5,000 in a single year. Students take business math, accounting, writing, and public speaking courses to hone financial and social proficiencies that increase their job readiness. ESTA will also be expanding to include new degree tracks including woodworking, construction, and green technology, giving women opportunities to advance in growing fields that provide living wages.
ESTA and the whole Eliada family is grateful to Women for Women for helping to provide employment, job training, and financial education to young women at Eliada.