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“I was born and raised on the west coast of Africa, in Ghana. The Gold Coast. I was raised by my grandmother. She was my rock. I watched her grow older. The culture in Africa was, your parents take care of you, and then you are there to care of them. When the opportunity came to move to the United States, I knew the freedoms that would give me. I was chosen out of 100,000 people to come to America. When I arrived in New York City, I knew that working with the elderly was the closest to my heart. I got my CNA and began working in home care through different agencies.”

“I always knew taking care of people was my passion. I eventually moved to Minnesota. It was calm compared to New York City and I wanted that. One of my in-home clients at another job, she had actually called my agency and said not to hire a Black person. I didn’t know that at the time.  I was interviewed by her and I got the job. Three weeks or a month later, we had gotten so close. We were making lunch and she said “Fati, I have a confession to make. I actually told your agency that I didn’t want a Black person to come. I’m 82 years old, but I’ve never had an encounter with a Black person like I’ve had with you. I thank the Lord that you came to my life at this age, and that you came into my life when you did. You have changed my whole perspective. I never thought different until I met you. It took me this long.” We cried and cried and cried and hugged. I remember talking to my boss about it and she knew about that call. She said she knew that I was the right person to send.”

“I worked a job in Florida for a while. I found a job helping a family my first day. That was 2005. We still exchange Christmas cards. This is my line of work. This is where I belong.”

Fati, left, with her daughter Fildaues–both ACR employees!

“Eventually, being a single mother, I needed to make more money, so for almost 10 years I worked full-time for a large local corporation. I knew that my abilities were in helping others though. My daughter works for ACR and I had heard her praise ACR in many, many ways. She always tried to drag me to the hiring events, but I didn’t have the urge to apply quite yet. Eventually, I felt like it was time for the change and I applied. Even though the pay was less, the job is fulfilling to the point where I don’t even think about my paycheck. I enjoy my work so much that I don’t care. I go and come back home feeling happy. During this pandemic, I’m so grateful to God for having a job that I like, and where I can even work overtime when I want to.”

“My ACR home is my second family. I work full-time overnights, and I love being able to help in some ways that the other shifts aren’t able to do. I make sure that that the residents I work with have a clean place to live and a delicious meal. My son always said that my meals included a drop of ‘mom love’. I just love to cook.”

“We have a wonderful team. My supervisor is amazing. She’s just an awesome person. The young ladies and young men I work with—they’re all just amazing. They are doing such a great job. Together, we are keeping our residents very happy and healthy.”