Every day, Shawanna does the near impossible to provide a better future for her family. Working three jobs, caring for four children and furthering her education is a huge responsibility this supermom handles with grace.
Shawanna describes her family as “blended, unique, fun.” Her two children, Michael (12) and Skyleigh (9), are excited to help their mom whenever they can. When Shawanna adopted Thomas (2) and Gabrielle (1), her two older children would be there to help her out.
As a family, they enjoy watching movies, baking cookies and going to the park. And the entire family is ready to play “whenever water is involved.” After the family settles into their new Habitat home, Michael plans try out for football while Gabrielle wants to start gymnastics.
Shawanna works three jobs to support her family. For the past two years, she has worked full-time in city transportation. She also works part-time as a care provider for individuals with disabilities. At this rewarding job, she teaches her clients the skills they need to be independent. In addition to these two roles, Shawanna has also started a weekend job where she can help women in domestic violence situations and share this information with others.
On top of everything else, Shawanna is also working to further her education. She is currently in school to pursue a degree in business management. With her education, she plans to one day open a treatment facility for teens with behavioral and drug problems. Since these issues usually “go hand in hand,” she hopes that she will be able to help these children grow and learn independence for themselves.
When talking about how she juggles four children, three jobs, school and working through the Knoxville Habitat homeownership program, Shawanna says that “It takes a village, and I have that.” She is lucky enough to have an extremely supportive family that is excited to help her build her future.
She looks forward to having “a place of peace and safe haven. Above everything else… a place of family.” She has already planned several cookouts, game nights and Taco Tuesdays at her soon-to-be home with family and friends. She sees her new home as “a place to gather… to be surrounded by love.”
As hard as Shawanna works in each of her titles as mom, driver, caregiver and student … she truly deserves to add “homeowner” to her list of roles. But, she is most excited about what owning this home will mean to her family. “I want my kids to have a place, a foundation, somewhere to come back to. They deserve to have that security.”
With the help of Pilot Flying J, Shawanna and her family will have just that. They will have a Habitat home where they can build strength, stability and self-reliance through affordable homeownership.