All residents and community clients of Martha’s Village and Kitchen have a unique story to tell. Numerous families and individuals in our community have reached the point where they simply cannot make ends meet anymore. Just when we think we have heard it all, more clients open up to us and share incredible stories about how they have ended up at Martha’s. With some encouragement, access to the right resources and programs designed to help those in need reach stability in life, many of these stories are on the path to a happy ending.
From Military Wife to Homeless
Kathy was sorting crates of donated canned food when we stopped by the pantry to learn more about her story. At a young age, Kathy married her husband who was in the Navy and raised their children in Florida. After 10 years of marriage, Kathy and her husband decided to divorce. When severe complications from gastric bypass surgery left Kathy hospitalized for six months, she had no choice but to allow her ex-husband to take their children to California. Once released from the hospital, Kathy had no job and no family to go home to.
As time passed, Kathy worked as a waitress but struggled personally and financially.
At that time, Kathy decided to move to California with hopes of a fresh start and to be closer to her children. She moved in with members of her family. She soon gave birth to her youngest child and started to feel uneasy with the family dynamics in the household and eventually left with only what she could take with her.
Kathy was able to walk to a motel near Martha’s with her baby in the stroller and the heat of the August sun beaming down on her. She made a deal with the motel that she would clean rooms in exchange for a place to stay. The deal was temporary, and Kathy continued to fear for their safety because of the level of criminal activity taking place at the motel. Kathy got on the waiting list for a room at Martha’s and lived off the food provided to her from the Emergency Services pantry. Two days before she was to leave the motel, Kathy received the news that a room had opened up for her at Martha’s.
Kathy’s Experience at Martha’s Village
Immediately moving in, Kathy’s first memory of Martha’s was walking into her room and sleeping for eight hours with her baby at her side. She was in a place where it was safe enough to close her eyes and allow herself to sleep. Since being at Martha’s, Kathy’s baby has blossomed from her interaction with other children. Kathy recently purchased a car so that she can have reliable transportation for work and is in the process of securing her own housing. She also secured a job at a popular franchise in the Coachella Valley. Kathy enjoys working in the Emergency Services pantry at Martha’s because she is able to give back and plans to volunteer at Martha’s after her transition out of the program.
Kathy is one of our many deserving clients at Martha’s who are taking action to improve their life. Unforeseen circumstances and hardships can quickly escalate and cause a person or family to become homeless. Many would not have the opportunity to change their lives if it wasn’t for the support of the community. Click here for more information on how to become involved and make a difference to those in need.