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      Strive 2 Thrive graduates move forward with confidence

      Nakoasha Dillard entered Strive to Thrive TMs program to help better her circumstances, as do many others in low-income situations.

      "I TMm a single parent and my son is two I TMm also in college and I was working two jobs at one time," says Dillard.

      Dillard is just one of the man Strive 2 Thrive's graduates in the organizations third class.

      "We have such a diverse group this time. It really just goes to show that poverty does not have a single face; it can be single parents it can be a married couple it can be someone who was doing well and lost their job," says Ausha Jackson with Strive 2 Thrive.

      Poverty in Albany is a subject that people -- from the public to politicians -- are addressing and looking to help more.

      "It TMs a good thing that poverty is coming to the forefront and people are acknowledging that it is a big problem," says Jackson.

      This big problem can be solved with one change of routine according to Dillard.

      "Your mindset has to change. If you TMre still in that mindset of ~well I TMm in poverty and well I don TMt make this much income so no one TMs going to hire me TM then you TMre going to be stuck in that same rut," says Dillard.

      It is that change of mindset that is keeping her moving forward.

      "Now I TMm working one job but it TMs barely enough to support me and him while going to school so it TMs very stressful but I TMm determined not to give up," says Dillard.

      Lagrange College, Bank of America and Capitol City Bank presented the organization with large donations to help launch Strive to Thrive TMs Individual Development Accounts (IDA) program. IDAs are special saving accounts in which the funds deposited by low-income families are matched to help them further their education, purchase their first home, or start a business.