It was our absolute pleasure to help this family with their security deposit today so they could end their homeless situation. Living in hotels, vehicles, and burdening others with couch hopping is no way for a family live, especially with children. This story is worth read and reminds us all that having a home is truly something to be grateful for and not to take for granted. Consuelo’s story:
We are a family of 6; Jose, Consuelo, and our 4 kids. We are currently homeless. We sleep on the couch in family and friends living rooms or on the floor when it’s available. Our family has even been separated because it’s hard to find a place for all of us. We rent a motel when we can and have had to stay in the car if we couldn’t. We moved to Orange County in June, hoping to find better jobs to support our family with my husband work skills and my schooling we arrived with high hopes. We had a plan to stay with relatives and thought we would have a house within a month but this did not happen. Finding housing with our section 8 vouchers has been difficult. We didn’t know that Orange County is one of the hardest places to find a home that accepts section 8. I came across an article in the Orange County Register saying many families lose their voucher because they can’t find a home that accepts section 8.
We are going on 4 months with no home. My family is large and it’s hard to stay in someone’s living room with five people on two couches. But I know I have to think positive and keep moving forward for my children. So I began to search for resources and I came across the “ Off the streets” program. I am praying my story and my family is one that you will see would be grateful for all the help we can receive. My two oldest children are fed free lunch at school but often I cannot cook breakfast for my babies because sometimes we don’t have access to a kitchen. We try and eat with friends at their houses for dinner. We have to eat fast food a lot. I buy snacks and fruit that wont go bad because we don’t have a refrigerator and hang out at different parks with the kids during the day. Last week our milk spoiled because we couldn’t keep it cold, and my son stayed up crying because he wanted a bottle. My oldest girls where crying just a couple days ago asking when will they have beds again and a house. It made me realize how just the simple things in life mean so much.
This is not the life my husband and me planned. When I think about how we got to this state of being homeless it happened so fast, but I know if my husband and me did not stay strong it would get worse. We still have life and life is worth fighting for. The 2nd best news we heard after hearing we could submit a paper about our family to your program is, we have finally found a house that will accept our section 8 Voucher and yes it was a breath of fresh air but there is still more we need to accomplish to make it our own home. But with your help it will allow us to have a deposit so we can move in and move forward away from homelessness. I want to thank you in advance for all of the help you provide families like ours. We know if we are chosen with this help we can begin again and start living life to the fullest with our children and have a loving home.
Before I end this letter I want to say my husband and me understand that life has hardships and is not always easy. But these months of being homeless with our children have been so degrading as a human being I didn’t even feel like a person anymore. As a mother the moment you hold your baby for the first time instinct tells you to protect and provide for this child and the moment you are put in a position where you cant it literally makes you feel lifeless. But I must continue to keep going and I have faith that everything will come together for the good.
Thank you, Consuelo and Jose
From all of us at OTS and all of our supporters, we wish the very best in your new home!
This family brings the total people we’ve helped this year to 113, and the total we’ve helped since our startup just over 2 years ago up to 290.