After a co-worker suggested I contact Catholic Charities, I walked into my town’s Emergency Assistance Centers (EACs) asking for help with housing. Ah, but I’m getting ahead of myself and my story. My name is Coreen. You are probably asking – why did I need help? Well, it all happened very suddenly.
My husband and I used to live with my daughter. We all helped each other out. Our relationship became strained after my husband passed away and our daughter very quickly got married. I do not get along well with my son-in-law so when he moved in, I moved out.
I spend my mornings babysitting, work at a convenience store in the afternoons and sleep in my car in various parking lots at night. Yes, I’m in my fifties and homeless but not hopeless. I have been at my job for years and I now receive survivor benefits from my husband’s social security benefits. I started saving up for a down payment for a place of my own.
After a couple of months of living in my car and saving money – and because of that nudge from my co-worker, I went to my town’s Catholic Charities of Northeast Kansas EAC. I worked with my case manager and we located an income-based apartment. This housing option fits well within my budget, but I did not have enough money saved up to pay rent and the deposit. Through emergency assistance funds, Catholic Charities was able to help with a portion of my deposit. I’m enrolled in the Catholic Charities’ financial education classes and with the help of my case manager I know that I can stay within my budget.
I’m scheduled to move into my apartment next week. I’m excited about having a home of my own and my coworkers are throwing me a housewarming party!