Theresa Cross moved to Keene with her three children nearly two years ago, looking for a fresh start. But that fresh start turned a bit rocky when her living arrangements didn’t work out. Theresa and her boys found themselves homeless for the first time in their lives.
“It was probably the hardest time of my life,” Theresa said.
She reached out to Southwestern Community Services, which found space for the family at one if its shelters. For five months, Theresa and her boys – ages 2, 4 and 8 – lived at the shelter. Theresa worked hard with her case manager and SCS was eventually able to find an apartment for the family and helped Theresa with her first month’s rent and security deposit.
Theresa also found a full-time job and is taking classes offered by SCS, including “Tenancy 101” and “Financial Skills.”
“I’m much more stable now,” Theresa said.
During the year, the family also didn’t have a car. Theresa and her children walked several miles a day – to day care, to the bus stop to get to work and to counseling appointments for one of her children.
At Christmas time, their lives changed again when SCS worked with a donor to secure a car for the family.
Theresa said her caseworker at SCS has been an amazing support system.
“I couldn’t have done it without her,” she said.
Theresa is grateful for the support she found at SCS.
“I know there are definitely more moms out there who need that little bit of a step to get where they need to go,” she said.
Monadnock United Way provides funding to SCS’s Housing Stabilization Services program, which seeks to reduce the number of people experiencing homelessness and reduce the amount of time someone is in the homeless system. We are happy to partner with an organization that fights for Theresa and her family and others going through similar situations.
Will you fight for Theresa?