Ahead of this year’s staff holiday party, staff members took some time to reflect on some of the most meaningful, impactful moments that happened here at the shelter in 2019. As we reflect on the past year, we want to share some of these beautiful, behind-the-scenes glimpses of hope for a new future that happened with your support.
–Feeling excited for a cancer patient moving out of the shelter into permanent housing. Not only does she have a home, but she’s able to share space with her spouse.
–It’s the little things. Maybe someone just asks for something as simple as one pair of socks or a hat. People remember when you do something small for them. It’s a wonderful feeling to know that you made a difference. One lady in particular came back and thanked me and now she says ‘hello’ to me every time I see her.
–A man who had been homeless for 30-40 years went from sleeping outside UMD to signing his lease on Friday the 13th!
–Helping a client who came from prison. He wanted to work but had no hope that he would be hired again given his history. We were able to get him a federal bonding letter and connect him to other resources. Having hope he could provide for himself meant he dumped drugs and now has a full-time job.
–A shelter client stopped me in the parking lot to show off a hand towel set she had purchased a month before at the Dollar Store. She bought it to symbolize her hope to get out of shelter and have her own home. And that hope was realized! She was getting ready to move into her new place.
–One of our clients was overwhelmed by multiple debts. We looked up her credit score together and were able to create payment plans with collection agencies. She’s now faithfully paying down those debts and saving for housing by being very vigilant with her finances.
–A few times a year, a former client will return to donate clothing or food items to the shelter. Even if it is something small like a can of soup they bought on a 2 for 1 special, it’s their motivation and gratitude that resonate deeply. They share that they want to donate to help others get back on their feet because UMD was a place that helped them when they needed it.
Thank you for being the backbone of the hopeful moments that often seem to miraculously occur at UMD. We look forward to all that we can accomplish together with your help in 2020!