My name is Jim. Not long ago, my wife and I were living out of our car with 3 kids – all under age 5. That was not the “home” or life we had in mind when we moved to Ohio. We came based on the promise of a new job with better pay. Unfortunately, things didn’t work out that way. When I reported to work that first Monday morning, eager and willing, I was basically turned away. Someone, somewhere had forgotten to get the proper approval to hire on new personnel. While they were apologetic and kind, unfortunately, I was still the one left without a job.
For the next few weeks, my family and I were forced to live off of the little bit of savings that we arrived with. Both my wife and I were looking for immediate employment, but that proved to be difficult in an area where jobs were already sparse. Without a source of income, we couldn’t get approved to rent an apartment. As you can imagine, just a few short weeks of living in the car with only an occasional night in a hotel, had tested our faith and patience. We prayed every day for God to show us a new path to follow.
Finally, I saw a bit of light at the end of a very long tunnel. I had a promising interview on a Wednesday morning. They offered me a position and I would be starting a new job on Monday. It was less money than I had originally planned for, but it would be just enough to keep our heads above water.
In the meantime, I decided to call Catholic Charities. We had passed their office several times over the past week, and my family still needed help until I got my first paycheck. We met with a Catholic Charities caseworker who listened to our story and made us feel at ease. She was able to arrange for us to stay in a local motel, and help us with some food. My wife and I felt like our caseworker wanted us to succeed as much as we did!
Going to Catholic Charities was just the thing my family needed to be able to make it here in Ohio. Catholic Charities not only helped us with food and a safe place to stay, they gave us hope for a new beginning.
Jim’s story reminds us how fragile life can be, and how quickly a major set-back can transform into a full-blown crisis. Because of people like you who pray for us, offer financial support, and share our stories of help and hope, we are able to serve families like Jim’s when they need us.