Jackie was a little girl when she told her mom she wanted to grow up and help homeless people. She never thought she would become one herself.
Jackie was laid off after working with special needs children as a CMS employee for 12 years. As someone who had been diagnosed with both depression and anxiety disorder, along with being a single mom to a teenage girl and a young son with autism, Jackie and her family bounced in and out of different housing programs. They became chronically homeless.
That is, until they came to Supportive Housing Communities. Jackie signed the lease to her home on March 18, and she and her children moved in on March 20. Not only that, but volunteers came and furnished her home with living room furniture, beds for each bedroom, dressers, lamps, pictures for the walls, linens and food. She exclaims, “I am so blessed since I have been here.”
Jackie would like to start working again, and she had just spent her morning at vocational rehab. She has worked with kids and adults with disabilities all of her life, and that’s what she loves. She is also open to a job in retail or becoming a cashier. Her mission is to help others and pay it forward.
Jackie still needs the support services provided by SHC. She is still working on her recovery, and she needs help with coping skills for her anxiety. She especially appreciates her Peer Support Specialist, because Jackie feels that people cannot relate as well if they have not been in this situation. She does not feel judged, and appreciates working with an agency that is understanding of her needs and who meets her where she is at.
Jackie still has her pride. She shares, "I am worthy of having a place where I belong and having happy kids." Even though Jackie has been out of her mother’s house for over 20 years, she feels like she just really got home. Her family does not understand mental illness, and she wants to break that stigma.
“Everyone falls down. It’s what you do to get back up.”