Testimonial – Shamonique Jones, Guaranteed Income Participant
“My name is Shamonique Jones. I am a 33-year-old mother, mentor, education advocate and a community organizer. Prior to the pandemic, I was diagnosed with a seizure disorder and early multiple sclerosis. This news burdened me because it limited my abilities to work and provide for my family.
For many years, I worked to help build the youth in our community by mentoring and nurturing them and aligning them with the community resources they needed to succeed. When the pandemic happened, it not only affected me financially, but mentally and emotionally too. I didn’t qualify for any stimulus or government assistance because I wasn’t able to work prior to the pandemic.
I applied for Social Security benefits but was continuously denied. Mentally, I felt drained and began to lose hope. That’s when a longtime family friend asked me to look into the Guaranteed Income Pilot program. Honestly, I was a little skeptical at first because it seemed too good to be true. However, I was desperate and hopeful enough to believe that this program was sent from God.
A few months after signing up for the program, I received a phone call saying I was accepted. In mid-October, I received my first payment, and it was right on time. What I thought was going to be the coldest winter ever turned out to be one of the best. The Guaranteed Income program helped me pay off all of my preexisting debt, buy my four kids new uniforms, winter clothes and boots. Most of all, it gave me the opportunity to give them an amazing Thanksgiving and Christmas. The pandemic took so much from us socially and emotionally. At one point, all we knew was losses, but the Guaranteed Income program was a sign that help was on the way. I had one less thing to worry about. I was happy that my children were happy, and my hope was restored.”