Hope for a better tomorrow.
We spent this week shopping mostly for items to assemble more care packages and Family Food Boxes. I always make it a habit to carry additional care packages in my vehicle because you never know who you will come across that may be in need. I feel lost if I don't have any. Realizing that we literally delivered hundreds of care packages to the surrounding cities and communities over the last few weeks and Family food boxes had me a bit drained and there was a growing need to replenish the items necessary to continue. I started to think about this sweet elderly woman I met weeks ago.
When leaving the store a few weeks ago, a wonderful woman was sitting on the curb as I was putting items into my car. She asked if I had any water, I grabbed several from the car from the case I just put in and we talked. I asked her if she needed food? She said that she wouldn't mind a bite or two! So I quickly opened up some of the items and gave them to her and decided I would sit down beside her and take a quick break. There was something about her that struck me and I wanted to know why this sweet old lady was homeless and on the street. I asked if she goes to the shelter, "No, honey I let the younger people go there, they need a place worse than I do. I wouldn't feel right taking the place that someone else could have had" I sat there with my heart breaking. We talked and talked for nearly an hour. She told me about her husband and that he had died. Then her son who was living with her had died. She did not now how to update information so she lost income. Then she lost her emergency food that her son handled for her. Then she lost her apartment because there was no one to help her figure out paperwork or who and what to contact. She said she was just a simple person and that no one really gave her much thought. Then she found herself homeless, begging for food and shelter and when she saw others in the same situation she could not bring herself to ask for help in fear it would take away from another. I wanted her to know that I hear her and that I see her. Before I left I asked her what was the one thing that she wanted if she could have anything in the world? She said, "I don't just want to survive, I want to thrive... I don't want to die here." I asked her if I could give her a hug. I gave her my number and contact information and told her that if she ever needed me or our organization to please have someone contact me. I wanted to help her so much more but she was so contrite and humble and her only desire was that she did not die on the street or alone. That broke my heart.
When I got home I started calling people. I called a lot of people. Shelters, Friends, Family, Organizations. I made her my mission. I was going to get her someplace to go. Someplace that she would be accepted and loved. I found her a place! I explained to this family what was going on. I knew they had suffered a loss recently and that their grandfather was living with them and it had been tough to fill that space and void in their lives. I set out to make it happen and we made it happen. The other day I went and met up with my friends and we went back and we found her. They generously invited this sweet lady into their home. Now we don't do that often, we have to be careful as we serve and wise but I knew in my heart this was the right thing to do and it was an answer to both sets of people. She accepted and has found a home. They love her. She has helped to fill this endless void in their lives and has quickly become a part of theirs. The kids even call her Aunt Nanna!!! Crazy how things can work out sometimes.