They sent me resources on houses and apartments that I could apply for and came to some of the apartment showings with me and advocated on my behalf to the landlords. They took time out of their schedule to meet with potential landlords, writing letters on my behalf, getting me resources and keeping me motivated. They gave me resources for clothes, food, furniture and funding support. And thanks to the shelter staff, Javan was all set up with a backpack, school supplies and a winter jacket for his first day of Head Start. I couldn’t believe I was blessed with the support system with great gifts and beautiful hearts I will always recommend [Partners for Housing’s] shelter program to anyone in need.
Not one time did anyone on the staff judge me because of my past. Without hesitation, they advocated for me and did everything in their power to help me and my son. Although I had applied for many apartments, I was never approved because of my rental history. Seven evictions had been filed against me, and although they had been resolved by payment, they still appeared on my background check. Even after appeals, I was never given a chance at stable housing before. I had viewed one of the [P4H] apartments and really loved it! The shelter staff came to my room and knocked on the door, inviting me to come meet the property manager. I went down with my son and met her at the Welcome Inn kitchen table with a huge folder. She was explaining the apartment payments and went over the lease and then asked me to sign the forms.
I looked at her, confused, and she said, “Aretha, this is your lease. You have been accepted!” and tears of joy came running down my face. My blessings don’t stop there. The manager from [another organization in Mankato] agreed to help pay the fees and deposit needed to get this into this apartment so that I didn’t have to spend my entire paycheck, leaving Javan and me with nothing. After exactly 30 days at shelter, I had moved into my apartment. My hard work and the willingness and full-time advocating that the shelter staff did for me not only have left me and my son with a roof over our heads, but a new beginning to our lives. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you all the [P4H] program has been a blessing in my life. If it was not for all the dedication and loyalty of the shelter staff, my son and I would be sleeping on the street. There will never be enough words to say thank you everyone that helped me make this wish come true.