Carrie joined the GUH team in February 2020. She is a Growing Up Healthy Coordinator and Early Childhood Navigator in Faribault.
Where did you grow up, and how long have you lived in Faribault?
I grew up in Eagle Pass, Texas, a border town with Mexico, and lived there until I was 21. When I got married we decided to move to Minnesota. We came as migrants in 1991 and we decided to stay in 1998. I’ve been in Faribault since 1998.
What is your educational and/or work background?
I have an associate’s degree in child development. I was planning to be a child psychologist and attended Augsburg College on weekends and evenings. But I was busy with raising my kids, and I put that on hold. Since 1998, I’ve been doing the same type of work I’m doing now, with an organization that really wants to make a difference.
Why did you take this job with GUH?
I have experience in community outreach and in teaching children. When this position opened up, I was working in Elysian at a Head Start for migrant families, which was a seasonal position.
What are your main job responsibilities?
Preschool screening for 3- to 5-year-olds, and touching base with families about signing up for preschool. During the early months of COVID-19, I also volunteered for the Truck to Trunk food distribution events and handed out activity bags to children. I loved it. It was a blessing in disguise because I got to know more people in the community.
What do you like most about the job?
I like the outreach. For me, it’s always been about making a difference, for the kids or for the community.
What’s the most challenging part of your job?
It has become even more challenging to try to get preschool screening done when families are worried about COVID.
What are your hopes and dreams for the community where you work?
My dream is to have the resources and the feeling of community that we’re all in this together – not you’re Somali, you’re Mexican. Not ignoring color or ethnicity but embracing that and looking at ourselves as human beings.
What do you do for fun?
I love being out in nature. We hunt on our land north of Hibbing, and in places around Faribault.