“When my husband lost his job at DHMC he stayed home with our two young children (and my eldest who is a teen), and I supported our family with my steady job. Then, everything fell apart. I had to have surgery. It took months for me to recover. We were months behind in paying the rent, and even though our landlord was trying to work with us, he could no longer go without our payments. I tried everything to reduce our expenses. I went to apply for food stamps and the case worker said the rules are that I have to take my oldest child’s father to court to get him to pay child support. When he and I separated we left on good terms and didn’t go through a court fight. He pays support when he is able, and helps out as much as he can. This has worked for us; and I knew the minute I got the court involved our relationship would be destroyed. I couldn’t afford that stress for me and the kids, and losing his support forever, so I had no choice but to go without food stamp support. Two weeks before Christmas a friend let me know about the Haven. The Haven was able to give me a loan to begin to catch up with my landlord, with the terms that I would pay it back in full with my tax return. They also referred me to Toys for Tots for Christmas presents and got me started using their food shelf as a resource. I can’t tell you how relieved I was to get the temporary help we needed to get through until I received my tax return and could get back to work full-time. Without the Haven we would be homeless, and who knows when we would have recovered from that.
The Haven Through 40 Years
The Haven will commemorate its four decades of service to the region by releasing 40 stories of people, events, ideas, and services fundamental to our mission. We will be releasing these stories weekly, so check back often.