Liz was overjoyed when she found out she was expecting her first child. When her partner left, Liz had to start preparing to raise a baby on her own with one income.
“I need to work to care for my daughter and child care is so expensive, I was starting to feel hopeless,” Liz said. “I had to go back to work after my daughter Etta was three weeks old. I blew through my savings in caring for her alone.”
A friend of Liz’s knew she had no family nearby to help and referred her to the Children’s Home Society of Washington North Seattle Family Resource Center for support.
“Everyone at CHSW was so friendly and the staff helped me have a better understanding of how to apply for benefits and file for child support,” Liz said.
The amount of paperwork Liz had to fill out at the court house for support was overwhelming. When she tried to ask the court questions, no one was available. Being a single parent is challenging and navigating how to get services can be stressful.
“Everywhere I turned people were so cold toward me as a single parent, accept for the staff at CHSW,” Liz said. “They treated me with dignity and respect. It was a breath of fresh air.”
Through her partnership with CHSW, Liz has received food assistance, guidance on how to apply for state insurance and was connected to family law resources.
“I went from feeling helpless and crying myself to sleep, to feeling safe and supported by CHSW staff,” Liz said. “CHSW also enrolled my daughter, now 4 months old, and I in the holiday helper program to receive gifts during the holidays. We’re not alone now that I have CHSW and I’m going to get to a place where I can put money aside for my child’s future.”
Jennifer Parsons is the marketing communications manager for Children's Home Society of Washington.