RECLAIMING HOPE | Hope is the starting point for Urban Homeworks, the force that brings together low-income families, young professionals, job skill trainees, and volunteers from all walks of life into an exchange that restores homes and creates a space for neighbors to engage.
Realizing the dream of HOME
Ethropic sat in her living room excited, confused and disturbed. Her oldest daughter was on her way to college in Florida - a moment that E had dreamed of since she was young. Growing up on the Southside of Chicago, E refused to be defined by her environment full of discouragement and expectant pitfalls. She refused to accept a mentality of scarcity and chose to pursue a path of abundance.
She faced an uphill battle as a woman of color leaving Chicago and landing in a mostly white suburb of the Twin Cities. Yet, she thrived on the challenge. She and her children proactively dealt with unintended and intended discrimination by engaging her neighbors, and fellow parents. She told them, “I am not here to rob you or to hurt you. I am your neighbor.” She was a catalyst for growth. She started a diversity task force and joined the Parent Teacher Association.
E created a pathway for her daughters to break free from a cycle of poverty! But even the success of her college-bound daughter was overshadowed by a notice from the state that she would have to move within 14 days because her household was smaller forcing her to move to a different city and her five younger children to another school system away from the sense of home they’d fought to establish.
Holding that letter made E realize that regardless of the difficult steps she’d taken to provide stability for her family, she remained in the grip of poverty and dependence. She found herself on the verge of leaving a “safety net” behind and that scared her. She had to take the brave leap of faith abandoning a subsidy that had stabilized her home yet now threatened it.
After a difficult journey, in August, 2013, she became an owner of an Urban Homeworks home in north Minneapolis and one more parent advocating for quality education for her kids, one more consumer demanding healthy options at the chain grocery store, and one more resident picking litter off of her city streets. E is a definition defying woman awakened daily to a reality that seems uncontrollable yet has taken the bold steps to grow, challenge and change herself and anybody she encounters.
You are making dreams like E’s real. Your financial commitment, time, and prayer are critical to the success of family after family redefining the reality of what HOME means. Hear more of her story by going to urbanhomeworks.org/pth.