Wins for Kansas: Thrive

WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

In Wichita, thousands of people fall well below the national poverty line.

But a local group is hoping to change that, through motivation and education.

Over the past five years, Thrive has helped hundreds of people to improve their lives and rise out of poverty.

"We educate, empower and encourage people in poverty," says Trish Hileman, Thrive's Program Director.

Hileman says they start by enrolling people in a classroom setting.

"That class helps them to stop and evaluate where they are in life and where they want to be in life," adds Hileman.

Working with a mentor and focusing on goals can be illuminating.

"When you're in poverty, you don't have time to look at the future. You're dealing with right now, you're dealing with today's problems, tomorrow maybe, but it's the right now. There are people who have jobs, they may not be working enough hours, or they may not be working for a high enough wage to make it really, and we are there to help equip them, encourage them to resource them with the resources in the community to get over that next hurdle," says Hileman.

Armed with a little knowledge and plenty of encouragement, Thrive also helps people to realize the importance of networking.

"Doing anything in this life making any change, requires hard work. But there are a lot of things that a set up in our society that make it hard without connections," says Hileman.

To help Thrive continue its mission, KAKE's partners DeVaughn James Injury Lawyers are honoring them with this week's Wins for Kansas.