Shay was in love. But love didn’t turn out how she expected, and instead involved abuse, heartache, pain and darkness. She decided to start over.

“I wasn’t afraid of being on my own with my two kids and no help at all,” she says. “But we didn’t have anything – no food and no resources.”

Shay called 211, a resource for housing, food, clothing and other assistance for those in need. They referred the family to the Mission’s Genesis House. Shay immediately transferred her older son to a nearby school, found daycare for her younger son and started “moving forward.”

She began taking classes to get her GED, which will eventually enable her to get her Associate’s degree. She also transferred her Certified Nursing Assistant license to California so she can begin looking for work.

“I try to get up every day, worship and do what I have to do,” she says. “I haven’t given up, because if you get too comfortable, then life is going to pass you by. Being at the

Mission has been a great learning experience on the way towards independence!”

Shay is also taking massage therapy classes to have another avenue of possible employment. She is not afraid to make changes where they are necessary. “I’ve seen such a change in my family since we came here,” Shay says. “My son was bullied and taunted at his old school. Here, he’s happy to get up, meet his friends at the bus stop and go to school to learn.”

Although they had to relocate, Shay and her family have no regrets. “We had to move thousands of miles to feel loved. But that’s okay – I’ve got my family and I would never trade that for the world.”