What were your circumstances before coming to the Coalition?
I was staying at a sober living facility outside of Utah that was less than ideal. It was a very hostile and dirty environment. The only reason I stayed was I needed the extra support in leaving a domestic violence situation – which I had faced most of my life growing up and throughout my marriage. I was very apprehensive to leave the facility as it had become my crutch – but I also knew it wasn’t going to be a place where I could fully recover and find my way. I was in such a dark place and knew I was going to have to leave and things would get worse prior to getting better. For the next two years I was on the street and homeless when I found the Food & Care Coalition.
How did your stay at the Food and Care Coalition impact you?
The Coalition was by far, the best support facility I’ve ever been to. There will always be issues when you are living in a shared environment, but as long as you focus on your personal recovery, it’ll be fine. I recently moved into my own place and I’m so grateful. It is my personal space to retreat and recharge and is just a breath of fresh air in my life. The place I moved to has night security so I feel very safe which hasn’t been the norm throughout my life. I truly feel safe and that I can overcome anything. The path hasn’t been easy but I’m stronger and better prepared to face life’s challenges because of it.
Is there anything you would want the public to know about your story?
I’ve worked my whole life in the health care industry and was raised in a wealthy family. I know that the community often thinks that all homeless persons are lazy or addicted to drugs. It simply is not true. I’ve learned that we need to reserve judgement and realize that we all have challenges and hurdles to conquer in life. We need to be supportive of one another rather than critical. I have also learned that each of us have a voice and an innate ability to fight through adversity. Don’t be discouraged by the dark around you as there is always light at the end of the tunnel.