Concerned about the economic status and situations of unemployed and underemployed people in the region, Rev. Constance Spearman, not one to criticize and complain, is offering solutions. An entrepreneur for many decades, she decided to use her God-given talents, life experiences and love for people to offer empowerment solutions. “My mission is to help those who want to overcome employment challenges and foster creative growth,” she said.
Through her businesses and nonprofit organization, she provides employment, education, training and financial support. She offers retail insurance training, has a homecare staffing business and often collaborates with other community groups and organizations to deliver holistic resources that improves quality of life.
Founded to create workforce development opportunities and economic empowerment through career training education, Rev. Spearman has established the Newma Community Development Corporation. The entity is committed to impact the lives of people who desire a better life for themselves, their family and communities. Reverend Spearman said the aim is to enable dedicated and focused individuals to move closer to a sustainable lifestyle through occupations that provide a livable wage. Through the low-cost classes and services provided by Newma, participants gain access to tailored occupational learning and receive job readiness and professional skills. Training in career industries include Commercial Drives and Licensing, home health care, business and entrepreneurship and retail insurance.
Newma’s commercial driver training is designed to provide basic knowledge and skills needed to obtain a class A, B, or C commercial driver’s license. Reverend Spearman views the CDL as a vital tool that can open doors to professional opportunities.
The Home Health Care/Certified Nursing Assistant training held in conjunction with Community College of Allegheny County’s Homewood Branch provides classroom training, and a hands-on demonstration necessary for participants to pass The Pennsylvania Nurse’s Aide exam.
The business and entrepreneurship program taught by certified instructors and entrepreneurs assists aspiring businesspersons to understand how to assess their strengths and passions, how to start a business, how to incorporate, and how to research finding resources to finance a business.
The retail Insurance’s Life, Accident and Health or Property and Casualty program is a five-day comprehensive course covering either life, accident and health or property and casualty. Students receive all materials to comply and take practice tests to boost their knowledge and confidence for passing the 40-hour State Insurance Licensing Exam.
A licensed and independent insurance agent since 1980, Rev. Spearman has a goal to reach as many people as possible to share the significance of protecting themselves, family members and property. “Everyone needs a will and insurance,” Rev. Spearman said. “It does not matter if you are rich or poor. You need to be protected.”
She indicated that insurance and a will helps you to be prepared for the unexpected. “A lack of insurance in the Black community is a detriment.”
Reverend Spearman said no insurance, along with the lack of a will, are reasons for many vacant and abandoned properties in various local communities. “When people die, often the property is not passed on. It sits abandoned.”
She also pointed out that when parents of young children pass away, there should be directives as to what happens to the children and money should be available for burial expenses.
A victim of unfortunate circumstances, Rev. Spearman knows the outcomes of not understanding the processes of the insurance industry. Injured in an automobile accident in 2012 that claimed the life of her husband and initiating a long recovery period and causing the decline of her business, her debts racked up to more than $1 million. For the past eight years she has been studying and learning the insurance industry. “It’s about strategies, and I want to teach how to protect your money through the benefits of insurance.”
A longtime owner of a home health care business, Rev. Spearman, in 2007, was recognized as a Woman of Excellence by the National Association of Professional and Executive Women. She also is the owner of AmeriCare Staffing of Western Pennsylvania Inc. In a consistent hiring phase, AmeriCare is looking for certified nursing assistants, companion caregivers, home health aides and personal care workers. Providing non-medical in-home care for the disabled, senior citizens and veterans, the company offers services in personal care, companion /attendant, homemaking and respite care. Areas of service include Pittsburgh, Elwood City and most recently, Philadelphia.
A Pittsburgh native that once lived in Minnesota, Rev. Spearman, before becoming an entrepreneur, worked in the corporate arena (banking) and as a career advisor. She became an ordained minister in 2012. Often counseling her staff and people she comes in contact with, Rev. Spearman says she has a passion for educating and empowering people.
Knowing what it is like to be homeless, to live paycheck-to-paycheck and having to start over in life, Newma CDC came about because of Spearman’s struggles.
“It came about out of need,” Rev. Spearman said of Newma, which means “New Man and Breath.” She considers herself as an “economic empowerment philanthropist,” helping people “become whole.”
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