Marie met her husband, Robert, in 1995 and they were married later that year. After Robert fell at work, breaking his ribs and back, he struggled to heal and find stable work, and subsequently turned to drinking. Sober but homeless, Robert and Marie spent time living with Robert’s AA sponsor and then staying with family. Robert diligently followed the AA program, and the happy couple had 2 sons, Ken and Richie. Richie was diagnosed with a form of autism at an early age and required assistance, so Marie could not work. Needing stable housing for themselves and two boys was difficult, and although they were approved for an EDEN program, they were on a waiting list before they could get housing.
In 2006, the family was able to move into an apartment with the help of EDEN. In 2009, the family moved into in a single-family ranch home. In 2010, Robert’s infant grandson, AJ, arrived to live with Robert, Marie, and the boys.
Sadly, Robert passed away in April, one month after a cancer diagnosis. With the assistance of EDEN’s Lead Scattered Site Property Manager, Tabitha, Marie was able to remain in her home with the 3 boys. Marie recounted, “Tabitha went out of her way to help me after my husband’s death, so that we could stay in stable housing”. When asked if she has advice for other families struggling with housing stability Marie stated, “When you have an opportunity, make the best of it….Once you get a permanent place, do whatever you need to do to maintain it.”
When asked about her goals, Marie stated that she is still in the process of adjusting from her husband’s death. She has a counselor who is helping her with her grief, and she plans to continue therapy, set up a schedule of chores for the house, and ask the boys for help when she needs it.
Marie says parents should “Do what needs to be done for your children”, and that is what she has always done, even when it has been very hard. Marie always wanted a single-family house so her boys could have their own yard. “Living in this house is such a blessing,” she affirmed.
EDEN is happy that Marie and her boys continue to maintain the loving home that they so cherish, and hopes the boys enjoy a wonderful school year!
Mia and her daughter Maliyah have been residents in EDEN Scattered Site Housing for the past three years. They live independently in their own apartment, and receive rental assistance and related services from EDEN.
Mia relayed that it has been a long road to roam for her and her daughter. She struggled to find decent paying employment because she had not finished high school, and her stress was compounded when she became a parent. Mia went to Hitchcock Home for Women to get help addressing some bad habits she had formed, and then spent time at Laura’s Home. Finally, with EDEN housing, and a good support system in place, Mia and Maliyah were able to achieve independence and move into their own home.
Mia is working full-time and taking classes on-line to get her high school diploma. Once she accomplishes this goal, she hopes to attend Tri-C or another educational institution and complete a program in the medical field. When asked what she would say to others who struggle with homelessness she said “Our decisions and choices put us where we are.” Mia said it is best to make a plan, look at the long-term, and figure out what you need to do to not only secure housing, but maintain it. Mia credited EDEN’s Scattered Site Property Manager, Tabitha, with helping her to “put my priorities in perspective” for the past three years.
Maliyah is starting school this week, and is excited to begin the 8th grade.
All of us at EDEN wish Mia continued success, and hope Maliyah has a wonderful school year!