Denise’s connection to JFS began when she when she came to the U.S. from Rwanda on September 13, 2012. Originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Denise arrived with her mother and two younger brothers. With help from JFS, Denise’s mother found work to support her family, learned English, and how to drive. Tatyana Abashina, JFS Employment Coordinator, recalls Denise’s enthusiasm and how she helped her mother with English in those first months and years, and how Denise’s mother, a single mom, demonstrated such extraordinary optimism throughout Denise’s childhood.
Denise attended vocational high school, and her siblings have remained involved with JFS–this summer participating in our Soccer without Borders and JCC summer camps! Now 19, Denise joins JFS as a temporary receptionist for the month of August before heading off to UMass Boston to study biology this fall. Our staff is thrilled to welcome Denise to the team.