See, Tawanda Baker could have given up hope. A Sam’s Club associate and single mother who received news that her young son had Leukemia. Times were tough and emotions were obviously escalating. But Tawanda had a goal. Her son was going to beat cancer and she was going to find a way to make a loving home for both of them to call their own, now and forever.
"I was devastated," Tawanda said when she got the news. "However, I was blessed that I worked for a company that was family oriented that helped me during this horrific nightmare. Sam’s Club is such a special place to work. People always show they care." And that’s when Tawanda found some peace. Behind door number 1 was defeat. She could have opened it. Many of us may have, but as you’ll find out, Tawanda is a fighter.
First, she knew she had to take care of her son’s health. She found out she was a match for her son and became his bone marrow donor. The good news was Tawanda could help her son’s health, but she didn’t know how she was going to make it through medical expenses, time off work and all the bills that would surely mount up. If you have no idea what’s available to help you, then it’s almost impossible. But when you know, new doors can open.
"To say my managers had my back is an understatement. Not only did my leadership team support the time I needed to take off, but they helped me get access to our company’s resources and funds, with things like ACNT (Associate in Critical Need Trust)," Tawanda said. "I never feared I was going to lose my job, and I always felt like I could do what I needed to do for my family."
That was it, right? She took care of her son’s cancer, returned to work and behind door number 2 things could go back to normal. No, not for Tawanda. That was only half the battle. She wanted to own a home, something she and her son could cherish together. So, she slammed that door shut and got to work.