“Kelly” grew up out of state with her mother, but she had never felt safe or supported at home, and their relationship was tense. So, when Kelly got pregnant and welcomed her daughter, she was not altogether surprised when her mom kicked her out of the house.
Kelly began reaching out to friends and acquaintances to see if she could find a place to stay for a little while. A contact she’d connected with online, but never actually met, invited her to come live with him in Virginia. Kelly was hesitant, but she had no other options.
The new living situation was awkward and worrisome for Kelly. She didn’t know her new roommate very well, yet she felt trapped with him, especially in a new place with no friends or support system. Before long he became violent toward Kelly, and this time the only place to go was a domestic violence shelter.
Homeless shelters can pose additional challenges during a crisis like COVID-19 – social distancing is hard, and in shared sleeping arrangements the virus can pass easily. Kelly found Second Story for Young Mothers, and was thankful to move in quickly.
For the first two weeks Kelly and her daughter quarantined in one of our townhomes while staff focused on providing them with food and other basic necessities. Now, staff have started working with Kelly on financial management, getting a credit report, and guiding her through life skills and parenting support.
Kelly told staff that she wants to get a job, so we’re also helping her with practice interview questions and updating her resume. For the first time in a long time, Kelly feels safe, stable, and hopeful.