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Stories of Strength

Gina's Resilience - a new life

Earlier this year, CCS’ emergency shelter admitted a mom with a newborn baby. Gina was fleeing a very abusive relationship that left her very fearful and separated from her five year old child after he was placed in CPS custody. Through the assistance of CCS staff, who collaborated with CPS, Gina regained custody of her son. Gina was ecstatic to have both children with her, though she had a long road ahead to get back on her feet.

Gina accomplished many things, including enrolling her children in childcare, participating in individual and family counseling as well as in-home parenting classes, and securing safe, long-term housing for herself and her children.

Gina was challenged to secure stable income, even though she was eligible for public assistance. Initially, it was reduced, then it was cut off completely, leaving the family completely without any income (other than food stamps).

Within a couple months of being at our long term shelter Gina was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease. As a mother of two young children with no family or friends to support, receiving in-patient care was not an option. Gina did not want to leave her children in someone else’s care, nor did she want to miss out on a very crucial time in their lives after having fought so hard to regain the custody. Gina opted to get daily treatments while the children were at school.

Despite this harrowing situation, Gina continues to care for the children, making sure they both attend school each day, and sets aside time each night to help with homework. In addition to her responsibilities as a mom and taking care of her health needs, she has continued to push herself through online classes, and has finished a certification course and recently began classes towards an associate’s degree.

The courage and strength that Gina has shown has truly been amazing. She has pulled herself together and shown an amazing endurance for the sake of herself and her two children. It is a reminder that families don’t come to CCS with violence as the only factor in their lives—rather, their lives continue on in spite of the violence, and sometimes they take even more unexpected turns.
*All names have been changed for the confidentiality & safety of the clients we serve

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