A family on the edge finds a second chance

Your partnership helps to restore families like Mia’s

Pregnant and homeless on Chicago’s streets, Mia fought to survive. Hoping for a new start for herself and her baby, she managed to come to St. Paul. But poor choices and difficult life decisions still haunted her.

“I can just wake up, breathe, get my kids together and do what I need to do for them. It’s absolutely wonderful.”

Desperate for escape, she began using marijuana and pills, and fell into bad relationships with the wrong men.

When Mia’s other two children were born, her boyfriend used their grocery money for drugs. She left him and soon was on the streets with her children, sleeping wherever they could and begging for money for food.

A Roof Over Their Heads

A kind pastor directed her to apply to the Mission’s Naomi Family Residence, finally giving Mia a safe place for her kids.

But the transition wasn’t easy. Mia admits, “I don’t really like authority, but I came,” explaining, “I didn’t really want to be here. I wanted to do it on my own, to get in and get out.”

Mia’s been clean and sober for many months, and the Mission’s given her kids safety. She’s grateful to her caseworker, because, she laughs, “I put him through a lot!”

But now, “I can just wake up, breathe, get my kids together and do what I need to do for them. It’s absolutely wonderful.”

Being Homeless Doesn’t Make Me a Bad Mom

Finding God and respect for herself has made Mia a better mom.

“It took a long time to say, ‘Because we are homeless doesn’t make me a bad mother.’ It was a lot of hurt and shame because I put my kids through this.”

But the past is behind Mia, and she’s eager to earn a GED, a criminal justice degree and a job in law enforcement.

Now, she says, “I’m enjoying every day with my children. If I’d stayed on the path I was on, I probably wouldn’t have them right now.”

I Can’t Stop Smiling

“I’m reading my Bible. I’m happy now. I laugh a lot. I can’t stop smiling. I just wake up, look in the mirror, and tell myself every day that I am a beautiful woman and that I can accomplish anything.”

Your gift today helps restore families like Mia’s who’ve been touched by poverty, homelessness, substance abuse or violence. Please give generously to change the lives of more moms and children.

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