Stories of Hope

Maureen G’s Story

With a successful nursing career lost to drugs and depression, Maureen G. came to House of Hope CDC in November of 2011 after completing a substance abuse recovery program with Amos House. While with us, she worked tirelessly with her case manager, Lynne Porreca to get her life back together and start the next chapter of her journey. She earned her Food Safety Manager Certificate, completed a national disaster-training program and volunteered with Salvation Army seasonally as a “Bell Ringer.”   Through her commitment to volunteering, she gained employment with Salvation Army in June of 2012. This new employment position has brought her, of all places to Harrington Hall, serving meals from the Salvation Army food truck. All told, she is now serving nearly 800 meals each week in her community. Maureen continues to spread the message of recovery with her peers and is sharing her story of accomplishment; overcoming a chemical addiction, retraining herself for a new career, and overcoming obstacles to living independently with her new neighbors at House of Hope’s George Galen Wheeler House in Pawtuxet Village.   Today, Maureen is proud of her accomplishments and thanks House of Hope for not just stopping at putting a roof over her head, but for giving her the skills and the courage to make a new and better life for herself. “Today, I’m a much more confident person, thanks to House of Hope,” she says. “Peace and contentment – that’s what the future holds for me. I was never content, I always wanted more and more. The funny thing is, now I’m living on the bare minimum, but I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. I’m grateful for what I have.” Holding back tears, she adds, “House of... read more

Pam’s Story

To see Pam today, you would never know the ordeal and the difficult hurdles she has faced. She is positive, upbeat, cheerful, and eager to talk to you about her journey to housing. But Pam describes her past self as passive, timid and with a very low self- image, especially as she compares herself to her college-graduate twin brother. After years of an alcohol addiction and “always trying to get away with things,” Pam found herself homeless at the age of 61. With no income and the additional barriers her age presented her in finding employment, she entered emergency shelter in House of Hope CDC’s Operation First Step shelter for women. There, she says, she had to stand on her own two feet. Accustomed to seeking others to do things for her, she now had to learn to navigate systems herself, advocate for her own needs, and take her life into her own hands. Her case manager Lynne, was a support and cheerleader for her, but would often hang back and give Pam the opportunity to come out of her shell and work toward her own accomplishments. As Pam took charge of her own life and her sobriety, her self-esteem and self-confidence grew. She also knew that she couldn’t keep relying on others; if she was going to get housed, she was going to have to do some real work.   While at First Step, Pam enrolled in the House of Hope Boutique Sewing 101 program. This supported employment program provides a six week training program where participants not only learn a craft-centered skill, they also learn the soft... read more