A year ago, she arrived at our Day Center with her teenage daughter.
Both had literally been on the street. Both daughter and mom had special needs, so the emotional toll was already great. They finally knew where their next meal was coming from, and where they would sleep.
We thought things were stable. We scheduled a routine medical checkup.
Thanks to a partnership with the Homeless Initiative Program (HealthNet), a nurse practitioner does free physicals once per month at our Day Center. The mom asked about a lump during the examination. The NP ordered more tests.
It was Stage 4. It wasn't good.
Her first thoughts were of her daughter.
Where would she stay? How would she get money for food? Who would protect her from being taken advantage of? How much time was there?
We worked on a long-term plan.
Mom and daughter moved in with struggling family for the short-term. With guidance from the Children's Bureau, we coordinated developmental testing. Unity of Indiana then came in to connect to long-term supportive residential housing options. With their help, we coordinated an intake with ResCare.
After a year of work, mom and daughter saw their new apartment for the first time this week!
The rent is not a concern. The daughter will have support from ResCare for all of her life. Her mom can focus on fighting cancer. Her fight continues today.
It isn't a perfect ending. It isn't an ending at all, but a reminder...
Whether you celebrate a miracle of candles, a miracle of a star and savior, or the warmth of family and friends today, remember...
"Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all the darkness." Desmond Tutu
Photos below intentionally unclear.