Helping a Family of Seven Stay Afloat

Mar 22, 2021

Thanks to COVID-19, Nancy has been doing something recently that she hadn’t done in over a decade: fill out job applications. Nancy has been a housewife for the past ten years, spending most of her days taking care of her five sons, now ages 23, 20, 13, 12, and 10.

Her husband supported the family, working trade shows at McCormick Place in Chicago. But COVID-19 put an end to conventions – and his job.

Now that he’s been unemployed for nearly a year, Nancy said they’re not able to keep up with their bills. “We’re sending what we can,” she said, adding that most companies have been understanding. Still, it’s difficult. “We’re behind in our mortgage and playing catch up.” 

While her husband has been searching for a job, Nancy started looking for assistance online. But she’s flying a bit blind. “We’ve never needed help before,” she said. Thankfully, an internet search led her to The Salvation Army Blue Island Corps Community Center.

The staff at the corps helped the family get caught up on their gas bill. And last Christmas, they provided presents for their three youngest sons through the Army’s Angel Tree program, which gives Christmas gifts to children, teens, and seniors who wouldn’t receive them otherwise. 

“It meant a lot. We’re very thankful,” Nancy said. “It was hard to ask for help. We had to swallow our pride.”

A couple months ago, Nancy also decided to start searching for a job, doubling her family’s chances at finally earning some income. She’s filled out applications at Wendy’s and other places in her community, but nobody has responded yet.

While she and her husband wait for that open door, they take comfort in knowing the Army is there to help. “We really appreciate the help,” Nancy said. “We’re very grateful.”

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