Arms of Hope Update
by Marilyn Flores, Leslie Salinas, and Patrick Lemmons
The partnership between Impact and Arms of Hope continues to affect lives in many ways, especially during the current pandemic. Here are a few short but powerful stories to illustrate that.
Mr. and Mrs. Moreno have 3 beautiful children. Prior to COVID Ms. Moreno worked part-time to help with the bills. After their children were forced to attend school virtually due to the pandemic, she and her husband decided that it was best for her to stay home with the children. Her husband continues to work but is making less, and they have not applied for food stamps because they are afraid it will later affect their immigration status. The family had been able to manage a few months through budgeting, but contacted Arms of Hope when they ultimately were unable to pay their electric bill. Worried for the children’s online schoolwork and also for the food that was in the fridge, Ms. Moreno had called the electricity company and various non-profits, but to no avail. Ms. Moreno had lost hope and was so happy and relieved to hear that AOH would be covering the full amount of her electricity bill.
Mrs. Rivera is a single mother of three. She has had a difficult time looking for employment since her children have been forced to attend school virtually and she has to be home with them during the day. She receives unemployment benefits and budgets well, but was still unable to make ends meet. Ms. Rivera has such a kind heart, and is always looking to uplift those around her. Arms of Hope has been able to help her in various ways, and is now working with her to achieve her goals.
Basilio is a single father of two children, having lost both his wife and mother to cancer. He works in construction and due to weather and economic conditions his hours (and pay) had been reduced. Heartbroken and with the stress and pain in his voice evident over the phone, Basilio reached out to AOH when he received notice that if he did not pay his rent there would be a lock put on his door. He had promised his wife to care for their children, and was now two days away from being homeless. The counselor at his children’s school referred him to AOH, and we met with him near his apartment due to the fact that he doesn’t own a vehicle, did not have money for bus fare, and lives too far away to walk. We were able to help Basilio, and his eyes filled with tears. He said that if he were alone he would not be as afraid because he could just sleep in the street, but with two young girls he did not want to put them in danger. As we said our goodbyes Basilio thanked us profusely, and wanted us to know that we were heaven-sent.