Last year, I was living with my mom in an apartment when she lost her job and we became homeless. I was able to sleep on the couch at my cousin’s house for a couple of months until I found a full-time job at Panera Bread. I decided I could make it financially by moving in with my boyfriend since we could pool our money. But he became abusive and I couldn’t live there anymore. My mom really helped me get out of that situation, but she was still homeless. Thus, I was homeless again.
We both started coming to Elizabeth Gregory Home (EGH) on a regular basis to get help with housing. The staff at EGH recommended an overnight shelter, but also provided the support I needed to completely sever the relationship with my abuser.
I have to say that staying in shelters makes it really difficult to hold down a full-time job. Many overnight shelters don’t open until 8 or 9 pm and we have to be out by 6 or 7 am. Only a few shelters actually have beds, most have 4-inch foam mats on the floor. There are no showers, no place to cook, and the grab and go breakfast items are limited to granola bars. I discovered I could cook, take a shower, and get food to go at EGH.
Michele Martin, the Operations Manager at EGH, connected me with the Landlord Liaison Project (LLP). I don’t have a great credit history and I am homeless, but I still had my full-time job at Panera Bread. Michele convinced me that they might be able to help. Finding a resource like LLP was huge. Michele walked me through the application and was there for me every step of the way. Thanks to her help and LLP, I moved into my own market-rate apartment and I’m working on a business plan to start my own business.
I appreciate all the help I got at EGH and the care and compassion that both my mom and I continue to receive at Elizabeth Gregory Home. Thank you!