Patricia is a 78-year-old widow who called the Council of Churches offices in tears. She was on the verge of losing her home. Like many seniors, Patricia lives on a fixed income. She had to carefully manage every expense to keep afloat. She was totally unprepared when the house she was renting sold – and the new landlord increased the rent by $250 a month.
Patricia just needed a little help! $250 stood between her and the safety and security a home provides. That is when she called CCO.
After a brief conversation and some assistance from our resource team, Patricia was connected with CCO Senior Services Program Director, Mell Potts. Mell was able to get her signed up for the senior food box program, which is a food home delivery service for seniors with mobility limitations. Since Patricia was not able to enroll in that program until the following month, Mell explained to Patricia how else CCO could help her!
First recommendation – a visit to Crosslines Food Pantry. Patricia had an aid coming the next week and she knew they would help her get there. Mell made sure she had an account set up for her to make the process as convenient as possible and told Patricia to make sure she asked for her when she arrived so she could provide her with some additional resources. “She was so grateful for our help,” Mell shared. “When we started the conversation, she was in tears. When we were done, she was so happy.”
Patricia was able to make it to CCO the next week. CCO was able to not only help Patricia with food and essential items but also helped her access rental assistance funds to bridge the gap she needed to stay in her home.
When Patricia arrived, she and Mell were able to meet in person. Patricia was a former scrapbook instructor and as a thank you for her kindness, Patricia made Mell a homemade scrapbook to put pictures of her grandkids in. “It is beautiful and yes, I cried a bit,” said Mell.
When Mell woke up the next day, her daily scripture was James 1:27, “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” How fitting given all that had happened the day before!!
“What a privilege it is to get to work here and make a difference in people’s lives. We gave her such hope,” Mell marveled. “It is truly an honor and blessing to get to do what we do each day!”