Success Stories

Community Action Opportunities’ mission is, “ We help people who live on limited resources transform their lives.” Here, in Success Stories, we want to share customer empowerment stories to demonstrate the impact of the agency, inspire others to be change agents in their lives and community, and most importantly, celebrate the accomplishments of individuals and families willing to share their narrative.


Taking that First Step…

In April of 2020 I was homeless, in a relationship with someone who did not see my worth, and surrounded by trauma. I had no job, was stealing food, being thrown in jail for missing court dates, and the one thing that was worse than any other, my four children were taken the year before.

I was not putting the most important things in this world first, my children and myself. I was alone with no food, no phone and no hope. I asked God to forgive me. That night the Lord saved me. I slowly began my path to recovery. I packed my few belongings and asked my only friend to come and get me to escape my life of trauma, addiction and abuse.

In the next few months, I went through detox at Neil Dobbins and the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Treatment Center in Black Mountain for treatment. The pandemic was a benefit as it helped to stop time and allowed me the opportunity to get my life back on track. I was reaching out for resources and any support services that could help me on the journey.

Last October my domestic violence instructor for Safeworks, a collaborative partnership between Safelight and Community Action Opportunities (CAO), referred me to the CAO Life Works Program. Since enrolling in Life Works, I got my own apartment, even better employment and bought a better, more reliable minivan. I also enrolled in school at Blue Ridge Community College and I am just a week away from graduating with my certification in phlebotomy.

Most importantly I completed the requirements of my case plan with the Department of Social Services and been granted by the courts trial home placement with all of my children. I am able to continue on this journey gaining control over my life with the support of God, my church family, my Life Works Coach, the staff at Safelight, and the love and support from my family and friends. Strong powerful women who want me to succeed surround me.

Life Works has been the ultimate push that has gotten me this far. My Life Works coach wrote down my short-term goals and I have almost completed every single one of them. My Life Works coach is the first person I call if I need to make any important changes. I would not be so successful without God leading me to Life Works. I have created this amazing life to support all of my children and myself. I literally trusted God and took that first step. I am so grateful to have this awesome new life with so much support and so many resources. That is a great blessing.

Allyshia’s Life Works Coach, Carrie, said she has seen her take huge steps in creating a better life for her children and herself.


CAO Staff Reflections

My name is Carrie and I am Allyshia’s Life Works Coach. In working with Allyshia I’ve seen her take huge steps in creating a better life for her children and herself. She has done the hard work to complete each one of her goals with a positive attitude and consistent smile. I observed and supported Allyshia as she 1) obtained safe and affordable housing 2) gained better employment 3) secured reliable transportation 4) established a support system to help when challenges arise and 5) completed certification to become a certified phlebotomist.

It has been remarkable to watch Allyshia achieve all these goals for the sake of the ultimate goal of reuniting with her children. Allyshia has regained full custody of them after more than 700 days in foster care. AMAZING!

It has been an absolute pleasure to work with Allyshia and supporting her on this journey. I am excited to continue this partnership and supporting her in building a future that she can be proud of.


Community Action Opportunities

25 Gaston Street

Asheville, NC 28801

Phone 828.252.2495

Fax 828.253.6319