Chloe was eight months pregnant and had a three-year-old daughter when a housing crisis forced the family to begin living out of their car. Fortunately, they soon found Family Promise of Greater Washington County in Oregon.
The trauma of homelessness can never be overstated, and for Chloe, it was enough to make her doubt her decision to come to Family Promise at first. She felt helpless and hopeless but recognized she needed to make changes; however, she was suspicious of the people and the process there to help her. Family Promise of Greater Washington County worked hard to gain Chloe’s trust.
Her ultimate acceptance of Family Promise didn’t mean Chloe’s journey suddenly became easy, though. Complications with her pregnancy required her to have an emergency C-section, and baby Marcus was born three weeks early and diagnosed with a rare congenital brain abnormality. Ongoing medical care and periodic hospitalizations will be a constant need for Marcus, and early on, Chloe and Marcus made at least ten trips to the hospital. On top of that, Chloe developed an infection that necessitated a second emergency surgery.
Despite her initial doubts, Chloe is grateful to have found Family Promise. Family Promise facilitated the critical medical care for her newborn son, as well as provided childcare for her daughter. Family Promise also ensured household duties like meals, laundry, and other upkeep were taken care of while Chloe recovered from surgery.
Just as significant, Family Promise identified a Safe Family who provided short-term care for baby Marcus early in Chloe’s recovery so she could rest and recuperate from her own health issues. (Safe Families are volunteers who support parents in crisis by providing a protective and loving environment for children while their parents regain stability.) This Safe Family has become yet another layer of support for Chloe and her family.
The family continues to work with Family Promise. Chloe states that once she graduates from the program she intends to give back by volunteering and adds that one day, she’d like to work for the organization.
“Why not work for a company you believe in?” she says.