Light of Hope Fund/Helping Our Neighbors

News/Events

01/19/2022 Following a passion along a different path

Changing careers doesn’t always mean giving up on your passion. It can mean finding a different path to pursue that passion. Consider the experience of Rosa Escalera in our Wenatchee office.

When Rosa Escalera gave up her in-home childcare business after 13 years, she still wanted to stay involved in caring for children. Especially considering the overwhelming need she saw in her community.

“The childcare need is huge, especially in this area. And providers play an important role,” says Escalera. “We have a lot of migrant families. Some don’t have stable homes. Childcare is their stability.”

Having come from a migrant family, Escalera has seen that need firsthand. Her parents worked in the fields, and they didn’t always have access to childcare.

“I remember being four or five and sleeping in an apple bin with my siblings while my parents worked,” recalls Escalera. “So to me, it was very important to provide that security for our children, that safety net, while they're still learning.”

Escalera now works with our Early Achievers Program. She coaches childcare providers on improving their childcare programs and helping them reach and maintain a high quality learning environment.

“We provide resources for anything from addressing behavioral needs, to enhancing their environment and providing quality learning material for different ages,” says Escalera. “We provide resources for interactions. You know, how to speak to a child, how to teach a child verbally. A two-year-old, for example, is not reading and writing, but they begin learning as an infant. We teach childcare providers how to interact with that child to help them learn and grow.”

While Escalera enjoyed working directly with children, she also knows that going back to school and joining Catholic Charities has allowed her to make a greater impact in the lives of children and parents. It’s a different path but it still allowed her to follow her same passion.

“I also love that I can provide resources and know those resources may help a child or a family receive services they need in the moment and that may have a lifelong impact on their lives,” finishes Escalera.

If you’re interested in finding different paths to pursue your passion, learn more about possibilities at any of our Catholic Charities locations by visiting our careers page.