Create & Integrate
How the stimulus funds helped me keep my house and start a small business
I almost lost everything, but the stimulus funds paid for the job that gave me the skills to start a new successful business. Poo-poo President Obama all you want, but it was because of his stimulus bill that I still own my home, have health insurance, and am happily employed.
During the recession, my career as a freelance writer tanked, and I no longer could pay my mortgage or other bills. My work life had already fallen apart since I had been laid off from a full-time job due to downsizing in 2007. However, I was barely surviving as a freelance writer and doing other odd jobs … until the recession hit. And then, wham, I couldn’t even find $5 per hour writing jobs.
During that same time my car died (I didn’t buy another), I lost my health insurance, and I gave up any extras (reduced minutes on my DumbPhone, no TV, no eating out, no health club, etc). My financial counselor told me, “Make more money.” Right. But jobs were sparse in Lyons, Colo., and public transportation to Boulder cost $6.50 round trip and then $9 round trip to Denver. As my options dwindled, so did my food supplies. I ended up at food banks and working at a local farm in exchange for produce. Finally, I rented out my home, and moved into a community living center in the middle of Boulder where I could better focus on finding a job.
A hundred resumes and a few months later I lucked out and found a stimulus-funded position with Metropolitan State College of Denver, working as the “Social Engagement Manager” for the Office of Alumni Relations. They hired me for on a one-year contract, which they extended a few months into 2011. And this is where my sob story dries up.
While at Metro State, I gained excellent skills working closely with some very talented bosses, the Office of Institutional Advancement’s IT department, and in classes that the College paid for. I gleaned skills in everything from social media to website development, and I paid my mortgage at the same time! I worked hard, and when that job came to an end, I not only had a plethora of new skills and contacts, but I also felt confident enough to start my own business.
So, I founded MergeThis Media in order to help other small businesses establish a unique Web Presence by creating and integrating their Web 2.0 Platforms, websites, blogs, and e-mail/e-newsletter. I help them “Create & Integrate” their media platforms.
I currently have three big and two smaller clients, plus a number of one-off jobs. I regularly hire freelance writers to assemble blog posts for me, and I recently hired a part-time employee will start full time in March. I’m actually turning clients away after just 8 months in business. Plus, I’m back in my home, I have a new (affordable, fuel efficient) vehicle, and my refrigerator is full of healthy foods.
I have read numerous articles lately that bash President Obama’s jobs bills and his stimulus package, including one more recently by the Heritage Foundation, which stated: “The government simply can’t create jobs.” Well, the government, in fact, created a job for me, which led me to be able to create another job for myself and for my new employee. And I have President Obama’s stimulus funds to thank for it.
This entry was posted on Monday, February 20th, 2012 at 9:00 am and is filed under Blog, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.
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