I came across Cradle of Hope through a google search made out of desperation. There was some slight hesitation in calling to set up an interview. My situation brought me embarrassment. Was I ready to live with strangers and abide by rules? At the time, I was 30 weeks pregnant and homelessness was creeping up on me. I had no other safe or viable housing options.
I called and scheduled for an interview. After a short stay at the Blessed Margaret home, I moved to the Cradle a month after my daughter was born. Betsy, the director at the time, graciously accepted my daughter and me. Things quickly seemed to fall into place thereafter.
Cradle of Hope is comfortable, cozy and located in a safe neighborhood. All of these things are essential when you have a child. I started working on my first goal shortly after moving in: employment. I began working at Every Good Gift, a local Christian ministry where mothers can bring their children to work. Jill Page, the Director, is a wonderful woman. The volunteers and pastors I met through that organization helped strengthen my weakened faith.
Another good thing about working with Every Good Gift is that I was able to express some creativity through the gifts we made for local church sales. Another positive aspect of working there was that I could bring my baby to work. After a few months of working part-time, I applied for the Red Cross’s Nursing Assistant program, free of tuition, and I was accepted. It opened doors for employment beyond minimum wage.
My experience as a CNA has allotted me a breadth of experience and opportunities for learning how to provide excellent health care. Cradle of Hope also helped with applications for subsidized housing, saving money, driving lessons and obtaining childcare.
Now in my last few months at the home, I can say that I have faith in a better future for my daughter and me. I’ve been able to formulate plans and overcome emotional obstacles with the help of mentors and friends. If you ever find yourself a homeless single mother in a situation similar to mine, there are options and there is hope.
"You grow from the situations that arise when you live with others, and if anything, it further propels you to move forward. I am forever grateful for my time here."