Ellen’s Story

“When I was chosen to be a participant in the Bridge of Hope of Centre County, my life was full of unknowns.  I was behind on my rent and electric bill and facing the possibility of not having a home for myself and my two daughters.  With no family or support nearby, I was running out of options.  Upon meeting the people who had signed up to support me I was taken aback.  I was not used to having caring people with open arms and no strings attached offer to enhance my life.  I was pretty upset with myself for arriving at this desperate spot in my life, yet the women listened to my story without judgement, and offered assistance without hesitation.  The program truly helped me in ways I couldn’t have imagined. I was able to stay in my home due to the financial support of the organization, and able to keep my electric service. I was not expecting to receive so much from my consistent interaction with my support group. I was able to move past my guilt and shame, and allow myself to step back and see things from a new perspective. For so long I have been focusing on my children and their needs, and my own were set aside. I learned that I am worth the time and the effort it takes to pull myself up and into the life I want to have, and part of that is allowing time for fun.  The bond we have made will certainly outlast our two years in this program, and for that I am all the more grateful to have been chosen as a participant.”

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Laura’s Story

Laura was the first in her family to graduate from high school, then college. In her mid-20s, she was a full-time paralegal raising a toddler when an unexpected cancer diagnosis plunged her into financial distress. Told she earned too much to qualify for public assistance, she and her son had been living out of their car for months when someone mentioned Bridge of Hope.

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Ellen’s Story