Employee of the Month: Hortencia Sanchez, Intake Coordinator

How long have you been with EA? What roles have you had? Hortencia Sanchez

I have been with EA for approximately for 3.5 years. I started as a social worker doing a little bit of everything. Then I heard about the Intake Coordinator position and applied. The best decision I have ever made. I now get to match kids in need with our amazing foster families.

What originally made you want to work with EA?

My family and I moved to California from Nevada, I'll be honest—I had not heard about EA before I applied. One day I saw the job position and decided to give it a try (the worst thing that can happen is not to get hired). I read about the agency and I loved it, had my interview and the rest is history.

Describe what your best day on the job looks like:

One of my most rewarding days at work is when I kick off the morning with an iced coffee, there’s nothing quite like that go-go juice to jumpstart the day! As an intake coordinator, it warms my heart to hear that my placements are a good match; it’s a reassuring sign that I’m doing my job well. And there’s an indescribable feeling when I can assist a child or teenager in finding a safe place until reunification occurs. Knowing that the kids are secure and the families are happy brings a smile to my face.

What do you wish people knew about working in your field?

As an intake coordinator, I want people to understand that the role isn’t as straightforward as it may seem. I’ve faced challenges, including being yelled at by some CSWs and foster parents for various reasons. Balancing everyone’s needs is tough, and I strive to ensure suitable placements. I consider transportation logistics, behaviors, and compatibility with other children in the home before reaching out to a family. Some days, the volume of calls and emails leaves me mentally drained.

How do you practice self care?

For self-care, I enjoy spending time with my family. There’s nothing quite like watching a good movie and simply relaxing. Additionally, I stay informed by following updates about Disney Parks, just in case I have a spontaneous weekend getaway to one of the parks.

What's a hidden talent you have, or something about yourself that would surprise most people?

I'm pretty good at the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle arcade game and used to be good at Mario Kart too.

Anything else you'd like to add?

I want to express my gratitude to everyone I’ve had the opportunity to work with. I also look forward to connecting with those I haven’t had the chance to meet yet.