Like many military spouses, Ashley Grant has difficulty finding and keeping a job, due to the frequency her family relocates. The job hunt was made even more challenging when her three-year-old son was diagnosed with autism. Grant needed to focus her time on caring for her son, which included taking him to therapy four times a week and keeping him active in playgroup in order to properly socialize with other children his age.
In order to provide supplemental income for her family, Grant needed work that would give her the flexibility and support she needed to care for her son and when her family needed to relocate for her husband’s job. A bonus would be if that dream job incorporated her sewing passion.
She was introduced to the craft at a young age by her great grandmother, who left Grant all her sewing equipment and materials when she passed away. Grant knew she wanted to incorporate sewing into her career, but a lot of the sewing-based work she encountered wasn’t a right fit.
“There wasn’t much I could do with sewing,” she said. “As an Army wife, it’s hard to find a job, let alone have the aspects I love about it, like sewing.”
For a while, Grant worked at an alteration shop on post, where her job was the sew patches onto military uniforms. Her heart, however, wasn’t in the work and she eventually quit the job. That same day, a friend told her about an opportunity with R. Riveter.
“What caught my attention was R. Riveter’s mission,” she said. “They provide flexible work for military spouses.”
Grant, who has been a riveter for a year, is in charge of sewing the bag liners. She said the work never gets old because each bag has its own style.
“I’ve never had a job where I didn’t get burned out,” Grant said. “Those jobs made me hate sewing. Working with R. Riveter continues to inspire me.”
With the work being so flexible, Grant is able to give her son the proper care he needs and continue pursuing her degree in financial management and accounting. Since the R. Riveter model isn’t a typical nine-to-five schedule, Grant is able to balance her family’s needs and her R. Riveter work. Currently, Grant is using the income from R. Riveter to save up to buy her husband a motorcycle.
“My husband is very supportive,” Grant said. “When he comes home from work, he’ll take care of our son, and on weekends he pitches in with meals and housework, so if I am behind or want to get ahead, I have that opportunity.”
Grant just recently went through her first move as a riveter. In addition to packing up her home, moving her family to a new location and registering her son to his new school, Grant also had her R. Riveter work to think of. Luckily, the R. Riveter team made things easy on Grant. She said there was no stress from the orders and that she had a team of other riveters as a support system.
“There was no pressure for me during the move,” Grant said. “They actually make me want to work harder because they’re so flexible and understanding. It’s a wonderful support system.”