Nevada Public Radio Listen Live

"This American Life"
Facebook Twitter Follow Nevada Public Radio

Support Nevada Public Radio
KNPR's State of Nevada About SON Archives Participate Specials

Voices of the Unemployed: Jennifer McGrath
Voices of the Unemployed: Jennifer McGrath

AIR DATE: August 25, 2010

Jennifer McGrath has two kids, no job, and no money for food. Her employer laid her off when he closed shop, and she's been jobless for more than a year. She applied for jobs at 7-11, McDonald's, thrift stores... "anywhere that will hire me." If her unemployment check doesn't come through next week, she says she'll have to leave her apartment... right around the time her son starts school. One of her friends now sleeps in a drain pipe, and she's "scared to death" she'll end up like him.

The city's jobless rate is over 14%, but who's unemployed? How are they surviving? What are their stories? In the first of our series, "Voices of the Unemployed," Jennifer McGrath shows us what she's doing to find a job and stay off the streets.

Jennifer McGrath

comments powered by Disqus
There are many many families in this same predicament. When the dominoes start to fall it happens fast and furiously. I am the lucky man living in my van with a small SS check. I am one of the lucky ones. This family needs help NOW
bob allenOct 27, 2011 15:57:38 PM
My friends and I are posting recipes for inexpensive meals all with Ms. McGrath in mind. I'd like to make sure that she is able to get this information. Thanks,
Twil TaylorSep 29, 2010 11:44:25 AM
I understand the need for privacy. Can we send aid to the npr studio in town to be forwarded to her?
meganSep 28, 2010 19:44:34 PM
I was so moved by her. I would like to help her out with a bus pass and some clothes but I don't know how to get it to her. Can you PLEASE RESPOND I know a bus pass would help her out a lot MY # [phone number removed] THANKS for this story.
cindySep 28, 2010 14:50:59 PM
Dear Listeners,

We appreciate the outpouring of concern and compassion for Jennifer McGrath and her family. Our program is dedicated to serving the community with relevant news and public affairs programming. Intimate, personal stories are a core part of that mission. For those interested in helping people in need, here are some of the organizations supporting individuals like Jennifer McGrath in southern Nevada:

Forgotten Voice/Straight From the Streets(Linda Lera-Randle El)

The Salvation Army

Nevada Partnership for Homeless Youth

HELP of Southern Nevada

National Alliance to End Hopelessness

KNPR Archive: Voices of the Homeless

A more detailed list of community organizations is available on Nevada Public Radio's Community Connections page:

Community Connections

-The State of Nevada team

Danielle [staff]Sep 28, 2010 08:07:30 AM
Thank you for the list of organizations but it sounded as if Ms. McGrath didn't have the ability to access these resources, i.e., transportation, phone, etc.
CherylSep 28, 2010 09:29:07 AM
I want to help. I needed to hear this story. Please someone help this lady to the library where she can print coupons and find programs to help her. My husband would like to donate some of his clothes to her sons and we'd be happy to provide toiletries. How can we help? Thank you! God bless!
AshleySep 28, 2010 04:13:56 AM
Yes, please post a way to contact Ms. Mcgrath. If you cannot post contact info for her, maybe you can collect donations at your office.
GinaSep 27, 2010 12:00:05 PM
Great interview! Sure it might've been a bit meandering... but FANTASTIC job giving a voice to someone who might not otherwise been able to communicate the precarious nature of her daily existence! Sharing the airwaves with those truly affected by this economic mess is what we hope for in our public radio station!

If you'd like to hear from a local furniture business that is working to keep its head above water - against all odds - please feel free to contact me.

We've laid-off nearly the whole staff...& have managed to keep the lights-on despite shrinking credit limits...and a consumer base that isn't buying big-ticket items!! We would love to speak about this from a purely economic standpoint...

Thanks again for a great show today ~ State of Nevada is one of the best news programs in all of Nevada.

KurtSep 27, 2010 10:36:45 AM
Please let listeners like me know how they can offer help to Ms. McGrath and her sons.
Marian GreenSep 27, 2010 10:36:23 AM
Is there any contact information for Ms. McGrath so a person could provide some financial assistance?
Jay DickermanSep 27, 2010 10:31:58 AM
Please post contact information for Ms. McGrath so that those who wish to help her and her family may do so.

I have shoes and supplies that I can give to her today if you can provide a way to reach her.


Carmelita Ramirez-SanchezSep 27, 2010 10:29:48 AM
I too came searching for where to send aide. Thank you.
MeganSep 27, 2010 10:49:26 AM
Web hosting facilities provided by Switch.