A Woman Pushing Back from the Brink

My name is Christina and this is my story.I grew up in a one parent home with my mother.  We went through many struggles that led me to leave home at a young age and eventually get emancipated by age 17.  Through my senior year I lived house to house, even sleeping in parks but managed to graduate on my own.  I became depressed , feeling alone which led me to run to the streets losing everything and everyone around me.I had my first child, my son Omar at age 20.  We lived with his father’s family in a house with no running water and at times no electric.

A year later, when I was seven months pregnant with my daughter Angelica,  we went to a homeless shelter.  The father of my children turned to drugs and I had no choice but to leave him. I had no home, no family support, literally no one.

I entered into the welfare to work program and learned about  Head Start through Gateway Community Action Partnership, a social service agency which placed my children in their daycare program and offered me a job as a classroom aide.  They also paid for my schooling which eventually allowed me to be a group teacher.  I also got my first low income apartment.

I went through credit classes, along with a Dollar to Dollar program that Gateway offered which led me to eventually become a homeowner.

Even though in high school I was classified as a remedial student, I will be graduating in a week in a half with my Bachelor’s Degree in Behavioral Science from Wilmington University.

I am now a homeowner of seven years and work in a doctor’s office.

I am happy and proud of what I have accomplished so far.  It has been a long road and at times I thought of giving up. I know that without Gateway’s help, I would not be able to stand here today and tell you my story. I thank God for all the strength he has given me over the years when I had no one else.

My dream is to further my education with a Master’s degree in Social Service and one day help women who struggle the way I have.