A Life Made Better by Enough Clean Clothes

Maria* and her two small children were able to ride out Hurricane Harvey, but their home didn’t make it. The family salvaged the few belongings they could from the flood-damaged structure, but there was precious little to take into the life they would have to rebuild.

Fortunately, Maria was able to connect with a disaster case manager through Catholic Charities of Southeast Texas. After visiting the home and assessing the damage, the case manager helped Maria gather the photographs and documents needed to apply for resources. Then the case manager guided Maria through the complicated process of filling out applications that could lead to the help she would need to recover.

Maria was fortunate to receive some funding from FEMA. She found a rental home that she hoped would become available to purchase. Maria and the children moved in with their few possessions and began making plans to save money so that in time they could buy a home.

Thanks to the help of the disaster case manager, Maria also received funding from Salvation Army to purchase some household items, but she wasn’t financially stable enough to replace the clothing, washer or dryer that the family lost in the storm. Not having those appliances in her home meant Maria had to gather up her young children and go to a laundromat each week to clean the clothing they had managed to salvage. It was an added burden to their already difficult life.

Seeing her stress, the disaster case manager made a referral for financial assistance from Catholic Charities of Southeast Texas to replace the family’s lost clothing, as well as a washer and dryer. Maria was delighted and grateful. With a gift card for Wal-Mart, Maria was able to make a shopping trip to get the essentials she needed – new clothes for her children that would be cleaned in her new washer and dryer.

Now, laundry day is a more relaxed affair, when Maria can spend time with her children while their new clothes are washed and dried.

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