Finding Her Pathway to Hope

Mar 16, 2023

At the age of 17, *Ericka was a single parent living in a women’s homeless shelter. She was a gang member with addiction issues and trying to get out of an abusive relationship. “Looking back on where I was then, I thought I would never see 21,” she said.

For several years, she continued to struggle and was living on the streets, until one day she realized that many of her former friends were dead or in prison. “In order to change, I realized I had to step out of my comfort zone. I didn’t want my kids to grow up like me.”

She heard about The Salvation Army Pathway of Hope program in Kent County, which helps families with children who want to break the cycle of poverty. She began meeting regularly with a caseworker and other women who were in the program. “I didn’t feel like I was crazy. I found the power to want something more.”

*Ericka, who had dropped out of school, was able to get her GED and enroll in college. Today she is married with three children and works a full-time job.

She hopes to graduate by 2024 and work with women who have also been abused. “I want to help them see that they can escape and lead a better life. I want them to know, that there is more out there.”

*Name changed to protect client privacy.

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