This past fall, Kayla, a single mother here in Bellevue, reached out to Bellevue LifeSpring for move-in assistance. Kayla and her five children were in the midst of experiencing homelessness after fleeing domestic violence and relocating from California. After arriving in Bellevue, they had been couch-surfing and staying with friends but spending most days and nights living in their car.
“Kayla was trying her hardest to find resources for her children. However, due to stress, frustration, and a lack of sleep and nutrition, it was difficult for her to communicate effectively and understand the various policies and guidelines each organization had,” shared Bellevue LifeSpring Human Services Administrator Laura Delmendo. “I spent a lot of time working with Kayla to see how I could refer her directly to places for the right type of assistance. We experienced a lot of pushback in this process, which was frustrating for both of us. However, we worked together, and I was able to connect with her on a level that she didn’t feel any other organization had done before – a human level.”
After 19 days and many phone calls between Kayla, the Bellevue School District, and other organizations, our team was able to assist Kayla in getting the resources she needed. Her family was able to move into an apartment right before the holiday season. Local Bellevue community members also stepped up to donate all the furniture the family needed to settle into their new apartment home.
Kayla shared these words of gratitude for the assistance she and her children received from Bellevue LifeSpring: “You went above and beyond for our family. We are so blessed and beyond grateful for everything you have done for us, so thank you.”
Currently, over 252 Bellevue children are experiencing some form of homelessness. This is just the reported number. We know many more families may not report due to stigmas or fears associated with homelessness.
Bellevue students experiencing homelessness can be in situations where they lack a fixed, regular, and adequate nighttime residence. These students may live in doubled-up housing, hotels or motels, homeless shelters, transitional housing, or domestic violence shelters. They may be living in cars, parks, or other public spaces. They may be living in youth shelters or living in temporary foster care placement. Regardless of the details, unstable housing often has severe and long-lasting consequences for kids.
Give today and help prevent hunger and homelessness for Bellevue families like Kayla and her children.