Debbie C. tells her story:

I am a single parent with two children and like many women, I receive no child support and my kids have an absentee father.  I was in a place in my life where I didn’t know where I was going or how to make it.  I was scared and at times felt alone.  I was working three jobs, living in a motel, and still had a hard time making my rent.  I knew what I wanted but didn’t know how to achieve it.  In July 2012, I was able to take a step back when I met Rosemary from the Salvation Army.  She gave me guidance while I was a resident in her Transitional Housing Program.  She has been a mentor, counselor, and a blessing.  Even though she was tough at times, she didn’t give up on me.  She made me stronger.  She kept me from giving up, providing security and a safe home for my kids and me.

I have been able to see the joy when my kids get new school clothes, school supplies, and Christmas gifts that I was not been able to provide.  I lost my father to CODP December 2013, and I felt like I lost everything.  I almost gave up on my Cosmetology License again, but Rosemary kept me going, and I knew I had to do this for my kids, myself, and to make my dad proud. I was able to achieve my goal of receiving my Cosmetology License in May of 2014.  I never dreamed it would happen.

After two years, I successfully completed the Salvation Army Transitional Housing Program with Rosemary and that’s when I was introduced to the United Way of Greater Williamsburg, who has been wonderful to work with.  Since I was still in school, I was eligible for the United Way of Greater Williamsburg Home for Good Program.  These programs with Rosemary and the United Way have changed my life.  They have made me more confident to stand on my own and to help other women, like myself, to know they can do it too.  I am currently in school for my Esthetics License to further my education in things I love to do.  I hope that anyone else who gets the opportunity to work with these wonderful women takes advantage of that opportunity to make yourself better for your kids and yourself.  When things go wrong, I’ve learned it only means new doors will open and God will not give you more than you can overcome.  It’s just to make you stronger and appreciate what you have.  Thank you.