Your contributions to Bellevue LifeSpring help us provide food, clothing, educational opportunities and emergency rent assistance to Bellevue kids living in poverty. Erica’s story is just one example of how you helped provide basic needs and a hopeful future throughout the school year.
My name is Erica and I’m about to finish eighth grade. Last year, my uncle died. He always seemed really healthy so it was a big surprise! It was difficult to move forward for all of us but it was much worse for my aunt. She cried all the time and it seemed like it would never stop.
My mom had my cousin and my aunt come to live with us. She became a mom to my cousin too and now he is like my brother. It took my aunt a long time to get back to work and meanwhile my mom was trying to pay for them AND us.
I noticed that we couldn’t always buy everything we needed but luckily we were all taught to share. We took turns when it came to getting things we needed like new shoes. My brother would get a pair one month, my cousin would get a pair out of the next paycheck, then it would be my turn.
Bellevue LifeSpring Takes Action
Last August, my mom let me know we were going shopping for new clothes for the first day of school. I was soooo excited. I was going to be like everyone else and show off my new clothes and feel proud to be normal. Later, when we were away from my younger siblings, my mom told me Bellevue LifeSpring had given us gift cards to buy the new clothing.
Bellevue LifeSpring also helped us with food. As Christmas approached, I could tell my mom was getting more stressed. I wanted to help, but I’m still too young to get a job. The week before winter break, we stopped by the Family Connections Center at my school and they gave my mom grocery store vouchers from Bellevue LifeSpring’s Breaktime-Mealtime program. I could tell she was relieved and that made me relax.
We went to the store and everyone got to pick their favorite food as long as we stayed under budget. I helped the little kids with the math. My siblings got peanut butter for sandwiches and I picked out cereal for breakfast. We all love bean and cheese burritos so we got those ingredients too. Bellevue LifeSpring also gave us vouchers to go grocery shopping for mid-winter and spring breaks!
Moving Forward with Gratitude
It’s such a good feeling that there are people to help us while we’re going through this tough time. Thank you so much for all the help that you have given my family. My aunt is doing better now and I’m excited to start high school next year!