Going Back to the Place that Gave Her Hope
Dianna is now part of transforming lives at La Posada. In 2011, Dianna, a wife and mother of three, became homeless after she was laid off from her job. Today, she is an employee of the same shelter that helped her and her family find stability.
“Being unemployed for a year was the longest time I ever went without a job,” Dianna said. She had always worked to provide for her family, but like many people during the economic recession, Dianna and her husband lost their jobs.
“I looked every day for a job, but back then, nothing would happen for me,” Dianna said. “People tend to characterize others who are homeless as drug addicts or lazy, but the job force in Toledo is hard and things happen,” she added.
Dianna and her husband maintained their housing for few months with money from their income tax return. Dianna thought the money would be enough to get her family through until she found employment – it wasn’t. The family lost their home. They lived in separate houses with friends and family.
“The thing that bothered me the most was that we were all separated. I had no other choice but to come to Catholic Charities La Posada Family Emergency Shelter. Finding a place to stay was too much, so I came here.”
Strange Place. Strange People.
Moving into the shelter was not easy for Dianna. “I was uncomfortable. Strange place and strange people,” she remembered. “The only thing I felt was determination to do what I needed to do to find a home for my family.”
Dianna stayed busy while she lived at La Posada. She spent most of her time searching for jobs, being active in her two sons’ sporting activities and taking counsel from La Posada Program Coordinator Jeanelle Addie.
“Jeanelle helped me a lot. She gave me the foundation I needed to find housing. Any advice she gave me, I listened.”
After living in La Posada for four months, Dianna and her family were able to move out and into their own home once again.
“My transition out of the shelter went smooth. I’ve learned that if you do what you need to do while you are here, the days will go quick. You just can’t wait for somebody to hand you something.”
Dianna and her husband are working again. Dianna still stays busy and works three jobs, including her part-time position as a Residential Specialist at La Posada.
“I wanted to work here because they helped me so much,” Dianna said. “I just wanted to give back. I thought, maybe I could help someone if I told them my story and told them, ‘You can do it.’”
“My advice to the current residents at La Posada is to stay prayed up. Prayer does work because there is only one person who can fix things.”