03/26/2022 – Welcoming Event – Sonoma County
Upcoming Welcoming Event – Sonoma County
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Here’s a brief introduction to the people we’ll all be helping …
Home 1 is James’s apartment; he was referred to Welcoming Home by Catholic Charities of Santa Rosa. To say that James’ life has been incredibly challenging would be an understatement. He was put into foster care at a very young age, as his parents and caregivers could not provide a safe environment for him or his siblings. He did not start going to school until he was seven years old. At school he began to flourish while playing sports and music. With the help of his foster mom, he was given a full ride scholarship to university and received a degree in Business Administration. Then life took a series of difficult turns. He faced many difficult, abusive family relationships, and later, a debilitating divorce that cost him his home, most of his belongings, the business he had created and eventually led him to file for bankruptcy. He took the only things he had and moved to Santa Rosa, where he lived in his car for nearly two years. James was then able to find a room at Catholic Charities Family Support Center in Santa Rosa, where he also got a job in maintenance. His work ethic, drive, and his college degree finally led him to a well-paying job as the maintenance supervisor at a local apartment complex. His boss at the complex noticed how hard working and committed he was, and found an apartment for him to live in. With tears in his eyes, James expressed his gratitude towards Welcoming Home. He said, “These resources are really what I needed to get started on my life again. Thank you so much!”
Home 2 is Jessica’s; she was also referred to us by Catholic Charities of Santa Rosa. Jessica and her children are recovering from a very traumatic year. While Jessica was hospitalized and dealing with health issues, her 15-year-old daughter and 13-year-old son went to live with their father. During that time, their father suddenly passed away; Jessica and her children were left homeless. They spent seven months living in a shelter. Now, Jessica and her children are settling into their new home. With a stable place to live, Jessica’s five-year old daughter will also be able to stay with them part-time. The older kids are excited to reclaim a sense of normalcy and honor their dad’s memory by incorporating his favorite football team, the Raiders, into their room décor. And the younger girl is so happy to have her own space for her unicorns and barbies. Jessica is looking forward to creating a safe home for herself and her children – “I’m so proud of us. We did it!”
Home 3 is Margaret and Gary, they were also referred to us by Catholic Charities of Santa Rosa. Margaret & Gary’s positive attitudes have pulled them through hardships and will serve them well as the embrace their new living situation. They are thrilled to have their own apartment with their chihuahua, Sunshine. Margaret, a retired masseuse, has lived on the street for 40 years and has never had her own home. Her 2 children and 6 grandchildren live in Kentucky. Gary, a retired contractor, has lived in Santa Rosa for 10 years, the last 6 on the street with Margaret. They love animals and the outdoors and are very religious.