Shaunte is one of the many wonderful people we’ve had an opportunity to help and get to know over the past several years. Check out her story!
Here is what our residents have to say:
“Before moving into St. Ray’s House, I often had to choose between buying groceries or buying gasoline or paying for daycare. It was tough because I had to have gas and daycare to go to work, but we needed food too. It’s not ok for your kid to be hungry when you are working sixty-five hours a week and it’s still not enough. A mother should not have to make these kinds of choices! It’s just wrong! I don’t have to worry about those kind things now. I am working harder than I ever have before, but it feels great because I am working on my future and I am making real progress.”
It is no secret that single mothers, lacking economic self-sufficiency, struggle every day just to meet their family’s basic needs – food, housing, transportation and childcare. I am sure you agree that a mother should NEVER have to choose which of the basic necessities she will provide for her children and which they will do without.
“I’ve always wanted to continue my education, but it wasn’t possible before now. I had to work two jobs just to be able to pay all our bills so I didn’t have time to go to class and to study. I thought that was the way I would have to live the rest of my life, barely scraping by. But living at St. Ray’s, I have time for school, because I only have to work one job. I am eager to accomplish my education goals and begin my career. I love the attention and the celebrations we get with each accomplishment. It is something I never had before. It feels good to have people that want you to succeed and believe you can. I feel so blessed to have this opportunity! I am making the most of it.”
Single mothers who have inadequate education, or who lack job skills cannot achieve self-sufficiency wages without first addressing her education and/or job training – so that is right where our program begins.
“Just when I was about to be able to get us a place of our own, I had a major auto repair. I had to use everything I had saved up for an apartment to fix my car instead. I felt like I was never going to get ahead. Never going to be able to provide what we needed. I didn’t have anyone to help me. We had nowhere to live. Then I moved into St. Raymond’s and everything changed for us. I mean EVERYTHING! I am doing things I never believed I could do. I now know that we are going to have a place of our own soon and I am always going to be able to provide the things we need on my own. It feels great to know that I will stand on my own two feet!”
For many low-income families, the barriers to self-sufficiency are accentuated by an absence of savings.For single mothers with no savings, the slightest set back, i.e. an ER visit, a car repair or a reduction in work hours, can trigger a major financial crisis.
“At first, moving into St. Ray’s made me feel like I had failed again. But I didn’t have a choice. I was homeless and I didn’t have anywhere else to go. Now I know that moving in here was the best thing that could have happened to me! I have learned so much in such a short time. I’ve learned how to cook fresh, healthy meals and how to manage my money properly. I even have a savings account! I can hardly believe everything that I have managed to accomplish already. I have a full time job and I am working on my degree. Great things are finally happening for me. For the first time in my life, I feel like things are going my way – like I am finally going to make it. I feel like I have control of my life and my future. I am making good decisions and working hard for our future. I love my life and I am so thankful to be living here!”
As you can see, our program is creating a lasting change that will affect not only the lives of the mothers we serve and the lives of their children but also the generations that will follow.
I couldn’t be where I am today without their help.– Alex
The help I received allowed me to get back on my feet and allow my family to have our own house again. They were and are a true blessing.– Rita
I found that SRS was the gold standard.– Amber
I have found a job and been able to continue my education with a roof over my head thank to St. Raymond’s Society.– Brooklyn
The support St. Raymond’s gave me was more than I could ever have asked for– Rita
These people genuinely care about the women and their children, and all they want to do is see you thrive. It’s not just a place to sleep every night.– Alex
The staff and other moms, who have grown to feel more like roomies, make me feel I have an extended support system during this new endeavor.– Amber
St. Raymond’s have been just a great support because being a single struggling mother is not easy. I can’t thank the staff and organization enough for all they have done.– Brooklyn
I was very honest with St. Raymond’s about my past. And the fact that they were still willing to help me and didn’t judge me was phenomenal.– Alex
St. Raymond’s allows me the opportunity to provide my daughter a safe home free of financial stress while I strive to meet my own goals.– Amber