A Growing Need
“For us in Bellevue, students experiencing homelessness is a growing population. Last year, we ended the school year with 257 students who were homeless and this year we’re on track to hit about 300. We’ve seen that number increase by about 20% every year over the last decade.”
– Melissa Slater, McKinney-Vento Advocacy Coordinator for the Bellevue School District
One of the most basic needs for any child is a stable home. In Bellevue, 18% of children are living in poverty and nearly 300 are homeless. These numbers are shocking for any community, but especially for one with Bellevue’s wealth of resources.
They Were Making Ends Meet
Lwin drove a taxi to support his family, taking as many hours as he could to keep up with the bills and make sure that his three kids had the resources they needed to thrive. His oldest is studying at the University of Washington and his two younger sons are in high school. Their family was just barely making ends meet when Lwin was in an accident caused by a drunk driver. He was unemployed for the next six months, trying to repair his car and working with a lawyer to get funds from the driver who hit him. Meanwhile, they fell behind on rent and were facing eviction.
One Month Makes A Difference
Thanks to the support of your community, Bellevue LifeSpring’s eviction prevention program was able to provide one month’s rent assistance for Lwin, giving him the time to get back on his feet and back to work. He is now a driver for both Lyft and Uber Eats, working two jobs to make up for lost wages. His wife is also looking for work so they aren’t reliant on a single income and won’t face homelessness again.
Just one month made all the difference. You allowed Lwin and his family to stay sheltered, safe and stable during an uncertain time. Because of you, his sons have a place to sleep and study and their family has a chance to get back on their feet and out of poverty.
Sheltered, Safe & Stable
Bellevue LifeSpring’s eviction prevention program provides families in crisis with rent assistance so their children can stay sheltered, safe and stable. Many organizations that offer rental assistance only cover a few hundred dollars toward a rent payment. Bellevue LifeSpring’s program is unique because it provides families in need with the full amount of their rent payment for the month so they can focus on getting back on their feet.
Your support allowed 34 families in crisis to stay in their homes last year. This means fewer families living in their cars, fewer children sleeping in shelters and more stability in unpredictable lives.
Breaking the Cycle
“Transitioning out of homelessness is incredibly difficult. For families on the cusp of losing their home due to one bad financial month, Bellevue LifeSpring can make all the difference by helping a family avoid eviction one time. The importance of this kind of help for our families cannot be overstated.”
– Dr. Ivan Duran, Superintendent of the Bellevue School District
Eviction prevention is vital for families like Lwin’s. Students experiencing homelessness struggle to succeed in the classroom because they have more pressing needs – when they’ll have their next meal, how they’ll shower, how their clothes will get washed, where they’ll sleep that night.
We believe education is the pathway out of poverty. A child must be sheltered and stable before they can achieve success in the classroom. With continued support from you, more families like Lwin’s will have access basic needs so their children can focus on school and achieve their highest potential. You’re making these brighter futures possible.
Thank you for giving students in Bellevue a place to call home.