“The people here just want to help.”

Maria and her three teenage children were living in their van for two years. She worked every day, fighting for a chance to better her and her children’s lives. Most of the time, they stayed by the river, but eventually Maria lost her job. She was devastated. After trying to do everything on her own for years, Maria knew she needed help. That’s when she turned to the family shelter at Volunteers of America.

The family wasn’t sure what to expect when they first arrived. Maria says everyone she had asked for help previously always expected something in return. At the shelter, though, she found people who truly cared for her and her three children. She says, “I’ve never met people who are so nice and helpful. I appreciate all they are doing for me and my kids.”

The family shelter is a brilliant example of how the private and public partnerships that fund our programs make a difference in people’s lives. With a safe place to live and warm meals for the family, Maria says their future is looking bright. She no longer has to try to do everything on her own. Instead, Maria has her VOA family that she can turn to every step of the way. With support behind her, we can’t wait to see what Maria and her family will do!