Though she had just given birth to a baby girl, “Bea” didn’t feel she had much to be happy about in February 2017. She had broken free from an abusive situation, but had no job and no home for herself and her children. Her 3-year-old son was bouncing from one day care to another because no one — including she — seemed to be able to handle his behavior.
“She was depressed. She cried all the time,” recalls case manager Anita Dudley of the first few weeks after Bea moved into a cottage at Family Renew Community’s Holly Hill Residential Campus.
With Anita’s guidance and support, Bea got a job in the public schools and started thinking about how she could make life better for family. She was referred for counseling, which gave her the will to face her unspoken fear about why her boy acted as he did.
“He has autism, but at the time she didn’t want to believe it,” Anita explains. “She got him tested. With his diagnosis, he was able to get into Easterseals, where he’s getting the help he needs.”
As her son’s behavior improved, Bea began to blossom in her work. She got a better job in a charter school, and, in her early 20s, discovered her passion. She started working on a child care credential and began daring to dream of running her own day care center.
In the meantime, she developed a skill for saving money that had eluded her before. With money in the bank, Bea moved into an apartment with her two kids in early May 2018 — just in time for Mother’s Day.
She was all smiles while she was packing up the car.
Please help us write more happy endings like this for families experiencing homelessness with a year-end donation to Family Renew Community.