Karen from Chicago, IL

Working my way through recovery and ready to take the next step and start my new job.

I need a Preparer's Tax Identification Number to start my new job as an accountant and a web cam so I can Skype with my children.


Karen is thrilled and thankful for her supporters Jan 3, 2013

Hi. I'm Karen again and I'm just thrilled. I'm so excited that I got the money for the PTIN number and and also the new web camera. So, I'll hopefully be able to start working again pretty soon once I get the number and will be able to start regular visits with my kids. Thank you so much.


I need help obtaining a PTIN (Preparer's Tax Indentification Number). I also need a webcam to have visitation with my children.

This includes getting a PTIN from the IRS in order to become employed. I've been offered a job, but I can't accept it until I get a PTIN. This costs $65. As soon as I pay that, I will get the number, and then I can immediately start training for the new job. This would help me so very much. I also would like to buy an inexpensive webcam with my children. They recently moved out of state, and we have Skype, but no video, and I don't even have enough minutes on my phone to call them.

Meeting this need will help me because I will be able to support myself and also contribute to my children's needs. It will raise my self-esteem and help me feel like a productive member of society. I will also feel like I am helping others by doing their taxes.

Getting the camera will allow me to build a better relationship with my children and watch them as they grow up.

My current situation is that I am working hard on my recovery. I am an alcoholic and it has really affected my life. I used to have a job and was able to contribute to my family, but now I am rebuilding my life from scratch. I am trained as an accountant, and I really would like to start working and contribute to my children. I want to be a productive member of society again. Unfortunately, I live in a recovery home, and I have no source of income. I also have no family whatsoever to support me. This $65 for the license number would completely change my life.

Right now, my biggest challenge is asking people for help. I've always been the one providing help. Even now, I am trying to volunteer my time to help others. It is also difficult to take things one day at a time. I am learning to have patience. 

Meeting this need will help me achieve future goals because I will be able to work again and have a sense of accomplishment in my life.

I know that I am asking for help right now, but I am committed to "paying it forward." If people help me, I want to help others. As soon as I am licensed, I will be volunteering one day a week (on the weekends) to prepare taxes for people who can not afford professional help otherwise. Thank you so much for helping me and allowing me to help others. 

I think of myself mostly as a driven and motivated person. I like to get things done. I'm also a mother who cares deeply about being able to help support my children.

I live at a recovery home for women like me who are rebuilding our lives. I went to school at Black Hills State University in South Dakota. I'm orginally from Poland, and came to the United States as a refugee from there in the 1980's. As a refugee, I was placed in South Dakota. 

I've worked at jobs including Siemens, Sara Lee, and Sysco. Something interesting about me is that I was confirmed by the Polish Pope, John Paul II. He was the bishop in Krakow when I went through the sacrament of confirmation! 

I'm most proud of my current sobriety. I have fallen down a lot, but I pick myself up and try again. This time I feel like I can make it.

Thank you so much. In Polish we would say, Dziekuje.

Need funded!

Thank you for helping Karen fund this need.

$110of $100

Need funded!

3 supporters


This need has been validated by Alexis from CLAIM (Chicago Legal Advocacy for Incarcerated Mothers)

Recent supporters

  1. $10
  2. $90
  3. $10


Validated by Alexis from CLAIM (Chicago Legal Advocacy for Incarcerated Mothers) (What does this mean?)

I have known Karen for several months. She actually came to CLAIM through our support group for formerly-incarcerated mothers. She is working so hard to restore her life to the way it once was. 

I think meeting this need is important because it will quite simply allow her to get a job and allow her to see her children through the video camera. Just like that, this need is actually all that stands in the way of her gaining employment. How amazing is that? She can literally take a job if this need is met!

This will move the recipient's life forward by allowing her to have employment, allowing her to volunteer to prepare taxes for low-income families, and allowing her to pay support for her children. Plus, that webcam will let her see her children as they grow and remind her what she is fighting for.

Karen cried when describing how she wants to pay forward her opportunity for employment to others. She is intelligent, sensitive, and loving. This small amount of money could completely change her life. Thank you.

About Alexis

My job title is Pro Bono and Staff Attorney. I have been in this position since April of 2012. My work involves helping incarcerated mothers, formerly incarcerated mothers, and the caretakers of their children. What I like about my job is I get to see families brought together. In the future, I… Read more

< script > window.dataLayer = window.dataLayer || []; function gtag(){ dataLayer.push(arguments); } gtag('js', new Date()); gtag('config', 'UA-179510775-1');