A homeless woman who has battled drug abuse, addiction, and abandonment successfully applied for a job at a Tennessee Kroger after sleeping in the store’s parking lot.
Kroger hiring manager Jackie Vandal kept hearing from one of her regular customers after she posted a flyer advertising a January job fair, “Will y’all hire me? You got room for me?”
Vandal did not know the woman’s name, but had a good feeling about her.
“You get a feel if someone’s sincere or if they’re just trying to get a job to say they got one and then quit a month later,” Vandal told the Tennessean. “She was very sincere.”
The applicant, LaShenda Williams, was the first to apply at the job fair. She told Vandal about her battle with drugs and addiction that led her to become homeless, and ultimately, sleeping in the Kroger parking lot.
Vandal asked if Williams applied online, so Williams grabbed an old laptop and asked Vandal for a power cord and a place to charge it.
After two hours of pounding away on the keyboard, Williams saw a “You have successfully applied” message. That is when Vandal told Williams she was hired.
Williams fell into Vandal’s arms and broke down into tears.
“Don’t you worry about anything. I’m gonna work you to death, and we’ll take care of you,” Vandal said.
Williams said she promised she would show up and work hard. Eight months later, Williams is still working at Kroger, coming into work upbeat every day. She also earned enough money to get herself her own apartment.
Her fellow customers also helped her by donating clothes, decorations, and furniture.
“Now, all my babies here love on me. No one abuses me, and no one calls me dumb and stupid. For the first time in my life, I finally got peace,” Williams said.
Kroger has been known to help the downtrodden. One Kroger employee donated a $300 gift card to a family living out of a van in another Tennessee Kroger parking lot.