As we wake up and face another day of unknown events, we never knows when that day could be the worst day of our lives. At times, life can lead us on a path we could never imagine we were destined. The best thing to happen in those lowest times is for sheer perseverance and a desire for a change to come together and push us to look for ways to see a better day, a new chapter.
For over 20 years, GRACE Transitional Housing has been that better day and new chapter for the families that come through its doors. Though times have changed, the mission to equip families with the tools to succeed and provide the emotional support through that process has not wavered.
The program, while full of opportunity, is not easy. Being a success in the Transitional Housing program demands vulnerability that can hurt and motivation that cannot be faltered with days of doubt. It is not easy, but it’s worth it to fully participate and be active in the process. Fully participating means gaining a new community of support and encouragement. Fully participating means having someone that can share excitement in the successes and tears in the failures. Fully participating means knowing that days of doing it alone are over.
One of our recent graduates who truly grasped this concept was Heather Woodard. We sat down with Heather for a brief interview to gain her perspective on her time in the program and the impact it has made on her household.
What were your initial thoughts/emotions when you came into the program?
When I first came into the program I knew it was going to be a fresh start for me and my girls for a better future. My emotions were all over the place I had been through a lot of trauma so I knew this program was the place for me to get the therapy I needed to heal.
What goal(s) did you set for yourself when you arrived?
My goals were to get as much school done as possible so I could finish for a better future for me and my kids. I also wanted to be on my feet and be in a better financial position by the time I finished the program.
Do you feel GRACE has prepared you to achieve those goals and future goals? How?
Yes. The program has helped me manage my money and spending habits. I’ve grown and matured a lot in the program. I have gotten a scholarship with the help of the program to finish college.
In what way has GRACE affected your life?
GRACE has made me believe in myself. I hit rock bottom and they helped me get my life back in order. I’ve had emotional support and financial support in the program. Me and my kids feel so much love from GRACE.
What was your favorite moment/memory in the program?
Bingo was always a pleasure to go to I saw how many people supported me and the program. It was heartwarming. I also loved the connections you make with everyone in the program you don’t feel so alone knowing there is other people in the same situation as you.
When reflecting on her time with Heather, Transitional Housing Manager Martisha Smith thinks about how “I have witnessed Heather find strength within herself that is going to launch her and children into a beautiful place. She is a fighter and more than that, a winner. I’m so proud of her, and I’m excited to see the wonderful things she adds to the world.”
Heather, we are so unbelievably proud of you as well as your fellow graduates. You are resilient, you are brave, and you are going to do wonderful things.
If you or someone you know would like to be considered as a possible candidate for the GRACE Transitional Housing program, please click here to answer a few questions.