Giving Fund: Holidays are a time for helping
Every Thursday and Sunday through the end of the year, the Stamford Advocate and Greenwich Time are publishing short stories about local families in need of a helping hand.
Each case includes an estimated dollar amount that would help them face everyday challenges such as rent payments, child care costs and transportation. Every dollar donated to the Giving Fund goes directly to the people in need.
One of the people who needs help is Annie, who can afford to take only one class at a time at Norwalk Community College. Her family is struggling to make ends meet. A gift of $500 would help Annie take more classes and earn her degree sooner, which would increase her employment opportunities.
(The names of those included have been changed to protect their privacy.)
To support one of these or another community member this year, chose the corresponding case number at The Giving Fund donation page.
The Stamford Advocate and Greenwich Time sponsors The Giving Fund in partnership with Family Centers and Person-to-Person.
Here are their stories:
The youngest of several siblings, Sehar lives with her elderly parents, who live paycheck to paycheck. Her parents are ready to retire but cannot because Sehar is still in high school and hopes to go to college next year. She has taken on two after-school jobs but money is still tight.
A gift of $500 for food and utilities would be an incredible help for this hardworking family.
To contribute, click here and select case #335.
Bernard and his four siblings, mother and grandmother fled violence in Haiti and are trying to find safety and security in Stamford. Bernard’s little sister was stricken with cancer, and most of the family’s resources have gone toward her medical care.
A gift of $800 would help to cover some living expenses that this fragile family faces.
To contribute, click here and select case #336.
Family violence left Marina, her younger brother and mother in a precarious financial situation. After months of legal and police involvement, the little family is feeling safe — but their finances are drained.
A gift of $500 would help Marina and her family purchase food and move on in a positive direction.
To contribute, click here and select case #337.
Kaila’s parents were 14 when she was born. Though their relationship ended, their responsibilities did not. After some turbulent times, Kaila is living with her father; she is proud that he is taking his role as a parent so seriously. He is a young man who works two jobs to care for his daughter.
A gift of $500 would help pay rent and relieve some stress for this dedicated dad.
To contribute, click here and select case #338.
Jayda’s mother won’t let friends come to their apartment to visit: there are too many mice, which are a health hazard and embarrassment. The family is looking for a new apartment to rent for the New Year.
A gift of $800 for rent would help this family find a cleaner, safer home.
To contribute, click here and select case #339.
Kelli lives with her two siblings, grandfather and parents in a three-bedroom apartment. Kelli shares a double bed with her sister. She longs for privacy and space.
A gift of $400 for a mattress and box springs would give her a bed of her own where she could stretch out.
To contribute, click here and select case #340.
Jeremy’s mom takes care of her two young sons and works as a housekeeper six days a week. She is tired when she gets home and often goes straight to bed, leaving her teenage sons to do a lot around the house, including cooking the meals. There is often not enough money by the end of the month for food.
A gift of $500 would tide this family over with groceries when money gets tight.
To contribute, click here and select case #341.
Caleb’s family has been living in a hotel for the past six months. His father cannot work because of disabilities; his mother holds down a job to pay the family’s bills. The family does not make enough to save up for the first and last month’s rent for an apartment.
A gift of $800 would help get this family into their own home.
To contribute, click here and select case #342.
Antonia is the oldest of five children. Her mother works at a fast-food chain to support the family and brings home dinner from the restaurant. These children rarely have fresh produce or home-cooked meals, because money is tight.
A gift of $500 for groceries would help this family eat healthier during the holiday season.
To contribute, click here and select case #343.
Rashel’s mother suffered a stroke and remains hospitalized. Rashel’s father is a deliveryman for a grocery store and works long hours to keep food on his family’s table. Rashel does the cooking and housekeeping for her family of four now that her mother is disabled.
A gift of $500 for groceries would help this family in an extremely stressful time.
To contribute, click here and select case #344.
Annie is a 19-year-old taking a minimum number of classes at Norwalk Community College because she doesn’t have enough money to pay tuition for more than one class at a time. She receives some financial help from her dad, however, he is also struggling to make ends meet. Annie wants to earn her degree, which would increase her employment opportunities.
A gift of $500 would help pay the tuition for an additional class and allow Annie to earn her degree sooner.
To contribute, click here and select case #345.
Erica is a 25-year-old mother to a 6-month-old little boy. Erica, her son and her mother recently moved into a new apartment. The little boy had been sleeping in a bassinet next to her bed in her old home, but this is no longer safe because he is pulling himself up and could easily fall. Erica is left with no safe place for her son to sleep.
A gift of $350 would pay for a crib so this growing boy has a bed of his own.
To contribute, click here and select case #346.
The past few years have been difficult for Jessica. She is a single mother to two children and has worked hard to provide for them. Jessica has suffered from severe health issues in the past and was recently told that some of those concerns had returned. This will put a financial strain on the family.
A gift of $500 would help this family into the New Year.
To contribute, click here and select case #347.
Susan is a single, unemployed woman just a few years shy of retirement. She is also the primary caregiver for her ill brother. Since recently becoming unemployed, Susan has struggled to find a job and is falling behind on her bills.
A gift of $300 would allow her to cover her basic needs so that she can focus on her job search.
To contribute, click here and select case #348.
Tara is a single hard-working mother of two children who doesn’t receive child support because her ex is living in a nursing facility due to a terminal illness. But Tara fears her car could be repossessed, because she is behind on her payments. She relies on her car to go to and from work and to go to night school. She also needs the car to pick up her children at an after-school program.
Tara would benefit from receiving $600 to catch up on her car payments.
To contribute, click here and select case #349.