The greatest need is often hiding in plain sight
As a Salvation Army caseworker, Sherrie knows there’s often more to a story than meets the eye. So, when Brittany approached her for help with a simple car repair, Sherrie looked beyond the ask. She saw a single mother who was recovering from addiction and depression, eager to build a better life for her family.
After hearing Brittany’s story, Sherrie could tell she was serious about changing her life. She told her about a Salvation Army program called Pathway of Hope that could help her do it and that she’d be with her each step of the way.
“Brittany wanted to sign up immediately,” Sherrie (pictured, right) recalled. “She didn’t even have to think about it.”
The ultimate goal of Pathway of Hope is to reduce or eliminate families’ need for all types of outside assistance. It’s offered at Salvation Army locations nationwide, providing free, long-term mentoring for families with children under the age of 18. Each family meets with a case manager at least once a week to set short- and long-term goals such as securing work or housing, obtaining an education, getting a driver’s license, creating a budget, and more. Graduation typically takes six months to a year.
After only a few months of working together, Sherrie believed that if Brittany (pictured, left) could keep up her high level of effort and enthusiasm, she would succeed.
“Brittany is willing to work and she is very resourceful. She has leadership skills. She dreams big and she has the confidence needed to make a better life.”
Now more than a year later, Brittany has met every goal that they’ve set together – from staying current on all her bills to getting a full-time job and being promoted four times to getting her own home. Most recently, Brittany attained her long-term goal of buying a new car to replace an older vehicle that was on its last leg.
“Brittany amazes me,” Sherrie said. “A lot of people in recovery get distracted and discouraged. But not Brittany. She never said, ‘This is too hard, I can’t do it.’”
The turning point for Brittany was when she got what she called her “army of support.” That’s the support we seek to offer to all who walk in our doors and meet our caseworkers like Sherrie.
Your Time Can Change a Life
Look around you today and try to recognize a greater need in someone. Then, offer to help or listen, since spreading hope can start with you. You can also help others, like Brittany, by using your time and talents at your local Salvation Army.