'I wanted to change my life' Intern finds second chance at La Chamba Cafe in Houston's East End

Wednesday, November 28, 2018
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An intern says a coffee shop in the East End gave him another chance in life.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- In Houston, you can find a coffee shop on every corner.

But one shop on the East End not only serves up a good cup of Joe. It's brewing up second chances.

Basilio Mejia makes the two-hour drive every day to his internship at La Chamba, but he does it with determination and gratitude in his heart.

"At that time I didn't think that I would have a second opportunity to get my GED or finish school. I was determined because I wanted to be someone. I wanted to change my life," Mejia said.

After spending time in prison, Mejia realized without an education he was destined to repeat his mistakes. That's when he found SERJobs. He completed their program, earning his GED, which then led him to La Chamba.

"While I'm doing the internship, I'm trying to see what career path I'm going to take and this is where La Chamba comes in. I'm learning about people skills, networking, communications," Mejia explained.

La Chamba is a real coffee shop, but it's run and operated by students who have just received their GED and are looking to make a transition into a career.

SERJobs is within the coffee shop, making it a welcoming and comfortable place to get the information you need to better your life.

"We do also offer services for individuals who have recently been released from incarceration, veterans, and anyone who is looking for an opportunity to change their lives," Café Manager Jimmy Perez said.

It's free to join the program. All you have to do is take the steps.

"I have an opportunity to go to college or get a career and it all started with SERJobs," Mejia said.

La Chamba is currently hiring other interns like Mejia, hoping to help teach valuable communication skills.

Pay starts at $10 an hour. All you have to do is apply at their cafe located at 1710 Telephone Road Houston, TX 77023. You can call them at 713-773-6000 or head to their website.

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