Bethany entered Autumn House a frightened single mother of three young children after suffering a brutal attack by a family member. During her stay at Autumn House, she was able to keep her children in the same schools, which helped them maintain some stability in their lives. Amber, Grace and Jason were able to attend groups facilitated by the Autumn House children’s specialist. For Jason, the oldest, this meant helping him begin to cope with the violent images he had witnessed of his mother’s abuse.
Bethany, determined to take the steps necessary to move forward, attended on-site groups, which included life skills, wellness and self-care, and parenting classes. She received a certificate for successfully completing the domestic-violence prevention class as well as a certificate for completing a two-part nutrition class that would benefit the whole family.
While at Autumn House, Bethany’s primary goal was to obtain housing for her family of four. She looked relentlessly for several months for a home that was suitable. However, barriers such as Grace’s health problems, poor credit and losing her own mother, created additional obstacles in the pursuit of her goals.
While these setbacks were extremely difficult to overcome, Bethany mustered the strength and support to persevere and eventually found a home for her family. Toward the end of her stay, she shared with the staff that her good days were happening more often than her bad ones. Bethany and the children were able to move from the program to their new home, taking with them a hopeful outlook.
It was the first of many good days to come.
• Autumn House is one of 46 programs operated by 28 local agencies that receive funding from Mesa United Way (MUW) and provide a wide range of services for people of all ages. MUW is sharing its stories in its “Faces of Need — and Hope” project during the 2013-14 pledge campaign. The names of those served have been changed to protect their privacy. To donate or to join or help organize a workplace pledge campaign, visit www.mesaunitedway.org. To learn more about Autumn House, visit www.turnanewleaf.org.