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Stories of Strength

HOPE Team Success Story

One story that stands out in particular involves an 81 year old client and her 60 year old, abusive boyfriend. On a late Friday afternoon, an hour before courts closed, a client walked into the Family Justice Center. In walked our 81-year-old-client whose drug addicted boyfriend had threatened to kill her if she did not give him money to support his addiction. Staff asked her what she wanted—her answer was “freedom”. Immediately we began a petition for a restraining order and a removal order. Minutes before the court closed, the client and HOPE Team staff raced to the court clerk to file the restraining order. As we sat and waited for the reply of the court, the client fell asleep, exhausted from sleepless nights of dealing with a drug induced partner. Thankfully, the restraining order was granted and we were able to take the client home afterwards.

As we were waiting for the light to change on the drive home, our client looks up at the trolley and states that she has never been on one. The conversation went on as such: “Never been on a trolley?” “No, and I’ve never been to the beach.” “You live in San Diego and you have never been to the beach?!” “No, he always told me I was too ugly to go anywhere. That I was just so ugly I need to stay indoors. I always believed him.” “Well… I think that now is the perfect time for you to go.” “I think you’re right. It’s time for me to do everything I’’ve never done.”

The reason this story is so close to the HOPE Team’s heart is because it reflects what we wish we can bring to every client— the inspiration to live a new day free from abuse. The ability to go places, do things, see things that were never seemingly possible before. Any time that our work can cause a better life for someone, then we have prevailed. In the meantime, the HOPE Team is planning an outing to the beach with our special client.

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