Story of the Week 5/13/2016
Memories of Past Members
By Allison Dandurand, Shelter Service Coordinator/Case Manager at the John Graham Emergency Shelter
I'd love to share the story of a client with whom I've been working with. She is a single mom, a person of color, and a non-native English speaker working full-time. Her son is a sharp & earnest tween who, never begrudgingly, translates for her. After years of living in uncertain circumstances, this small family has come to earn a permanent and affordable home of their own in the middle of a tiny & vibrant neighborhood while working hard and enjoying independence.
I originally met this family when I served at the John Graham Shelter 2 years ago. Back then, Mom did not have a job or a car and was fleeing domestic violence. A fellow AmeriCorps service member Leila Joseph, who has since passed away, worked with them by taking careful and deliberate time to facilitate their forward progression in small ways. She so looked forward to witnessing their continued success. Whenever I think about Leila, I like to imagine that she might be looking down on this family in some way. I know that she would be proud of their accomplishments, urging them forward as they move on to the next challenge in her own beaming & gleeful manner!