March 2015 I was blessed to welcome my daughter into this world. I sat with her in the NICU and told her my story about who I am, where I came from, and promised her that her future would be better. “My past wasn’t bright, but your future is,” I told her.
14 years in foster care, 13 homes, 3 shelters and countless caseworkers and specialist eventually I convince the judge that the system has failed me and to let me out of care. I promised my daughter much more in life, so we moved to Dallas to start over. I was severally in debt, couldn’t find a permanent or stable job, and childcare assistance unattainable. I found myself in a constant circle of what seemed like excuses mixed with struggles and was completely depressed. I couldn’t get a job because of childcare; I cannot get childcare because I do not have a job. I was force to depend on others. Which eventually lead us to a domestic violence shelter. I failed her.
I was so fortunate that Housing Crisis Center was accepting mothers right before my exit date of the shelter. I remember during my interview letting the worker know, “Ill answer everything as honest as possible, but where I am now, I cannot not live like this. I want so much more.” Once accepted, I no longer felt hopeless. Success was at the end of the tunnel and my crisis was over. I immediately set goals before moving into my apartment, but even that was not enough. It takes a lot to truly sit down and analyze what exactly is holding me back to become a better provider.
- Stable job 2. Housing 3. Credit 4. Education 5. Criminal History 6. Savings.
My amazing worker, and I talked for a few hours about everything. I explained that I wanted to return to school for Pharmacy Technician after finding a program that will pay for everything. She was completely supportive, but I didn’t want to lose focus on my other goals. Within 5 months I was able to raise my credit 240 points, my criminal record wiped away, and over $1000 in emergency savings account. Within 6 months, I was able to complete my Pharmacy Technician classes, received my state license, and immediately secured a permanent job. I completed my goals I thought, but I still am not where I need to be. There’s so much more to do.
Not one of these goals could have been completed without Housing Crisis Center. They helped me not only with a stable home, but so much more. My Empowerment Coach provided me with educational tools from building my credit, saving, tenant rights, and household resources. I took advantage of every resource and read every packet given to me so I could focus on building and being successful. She helped me with my goals and structured them specifically to my needs. The tools were given to me, it was my job to apply them. The fact that I was given an opportunity for affordable housing allowed me to become a better person and mother. It truly has saved me.
You never know someone’s past or what they are going through, but no matter how busy or the time of day it is, someone at Housing Crisis Center is always available. They go above and beyond to help support us, so we can become successful. Words cannot express how grateful I am for not only the program, but also the team at HCC.