Dana* came to Hospitality House a few weeks after being released from prison. The sequence of events that led to her incarceration traces back to many years of heroin addiction. While Dana was sober and had served her time, she often struggled with the shame she felt about her past choices and doubted she deserved a new life.
In a case management meeting, Dana was urged to establish mental health services and soon after began working with a counselor bi-weekly. Dana began incorporating coping skills and self-care practices into her daily life. Over time, she began to understand that she didn’t have to let her past define her future and she deserved more than her present circumstances.
Dana worked diligently on finding housing and was open-minded about any and all options presented. Dana identified that the most critical piece of establishing her long-term stability was to gain employment. She was aware with gaps in her employment and criminal history that this would be especially challenging. Her case manager connected her with an employment program for additional support, and dedicated several hours a day to her employment search. She attended job fairs, searched online, and followed up on every lead given to her. Eventually, she began to get interviews, often several in the same week.
Dana allowed her actions to speak louder than the voice of self-doubt in her head. By the end of her stay, she gained full-time employment and was accepted into a 2-year transitional housing program. A few weeks after exiting, Dana stopped by for a visit. A bit choked up, she shared she will forever be grateful for Hospitality House because we provided her a safe, supportive place without judgment, which allowed her to blossom.
We wish you all the success, Dana!
*name changed for privacy