Meet Sara, a Marine Corps Veteran
Sara served in the Marine Corps from 1999 to 2009, and was honorably discharged. Her and her husband relocated to New Mexico after she left the military because she grew up here. While her husband worked, she focused on being a stay at home mom and raised their children. Unfortunately, her husband lost his job when COVID hit, and the family found themselves on the verge of homelessness. Sara heard about the VIC through a friend that just received assistance a few months ago, so she called to see if she qualified. Sara and her family enrolled in our Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) program, because of her need for permanent housing for her family of four. After examining the situation with her case manager, Sara realized her family was living beyond their means. Something common in Veterans with a challenging transition from active service to civilian life, Sara and her husband were embarrassed at the state of their finances. Her case manager reassured her that getting help was a judgement-free zone, and this was just part of the stability process. With the help of their case manager, they created a household budget that was reasonable, and Lisa, our Nutrition Coordinator, helped the family apply for food stamps. Both Sara and her husband were able to find employment after three weeks, and our SSVF team provided the family with deposit, rent and utility assistance until they received their first checks. During our mandatory Housing Safety Inspection, the case manager noticed the children had outgrown their beds, but the couple was too embarrassed to ask for more help. Our Donations Coordinator arranged for beds to be delivered, and some toys for the children. Sara was so grateful for the VIC’s assistance that she comes monthly to say hello and drops cookies off for the staff that helped her regain her family’s independence and new found sense of financial security.
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