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Sisters try to recover from years of abuse

September 18, 2012 | 04:06 PM
Dear W.C.,

My sister and I have been homeless off and on for the last two years. We left what we called home when I was 19, and my sister was 18. I waited until my sister was old enough to escape our abusive mother.

I could never have left her in that place alone. Our mother has an alcoholic and extremely cruel.

My sister and I have endured so much together, and as soon as I realized this was not how other families lived I wanted to get us away.

Looking back, I do not know how we managed to survive some of the abuse she did to us. We were asked many times about our home life by teachers, doctors and other parents.

We knew we had to lie to cover the abuse or the torture would be even worse. If our mother even thought we were asked questions by someone we were punished.

Our father died from alcoholism when we were young. Our grandparents were just as bad, abusive and alcoholic. Our mother recently died from a drug overdose.

We are really in need of a new life. We have found jobs but do not have a place to live.

Living in shelters or any place we can find is not how we want to live our lives. We want to know what it feels like to live like normal people with someplace they are happy to come home to.

Please consider our request for your assistance. We know we need a helping hand on our journey and cannot do this alone. We want to find peace and a place to heal.

Thank you.


Dear readers,

I felt the pain of these sisters as I read the letter of request. It is a dangerous world for two young homeless women. There are many people in this world that could be abusive.

I knew they needed security and safety to become healthy members of our society. The Time Is Now to Help could provide the help they needed and we would do our best to be sure they received the emotional support they would need as well.

I called the number listed on the letter. It was answered by one of the sisters. I introduced myself and we spoke for just a few minutes as she explained they had only a few minutes left on their pay-as-you-go phone. We set up a time and place to meet. I started my research to confirm some of the details they had given me.

We met the next day at a restaurant. I wanted to meet at a public place to make them more comfortable and one that offered food as I assumed they may be hungry. My assumptions were correct. They were both nervous and hungry.

We bought them food as we sat to talk. The women, now 20 and 21, both carried backpacks that they said contained all their belongings. I asked how they were able to work and they explained they washed and changed in public restrooms. They both looked like college students, not homeless young women. In a better world or time that is what they would have been.

I focused our talk on their immediate needs of shelter. They were both working with good reports from their employers I had contacted prior to our meeting.

They needed a place to stay while saving money for their own apartment. After talking for a long time, and from the facts I had found, I knew they needed our help. I made arrangements to put them up in a motel with a kitchen

I told them after a period of time working and saving we would make arrangements to pay the first month's rent and security deposit to get them established in a good budget.

We then spoke briefly about their years living with their mother. It was extremely painful for them to talk about and they showed me some of their scars. I suggested a church support group I had found in the area. They promised to look into it. One other additional assistance was a phone minutes card so they would have a phone, especially for emergencies. We agreed to speak again in the future.

Within three and a half weeks, and another good report from their employers, we had made arrangements for the young women to move into one of the rentals they had found.

They were so excited to finally have a place to call their own. A safe haven where there would be no abuse or fear. They were excited to see The Time Is Now to Help had provided beds and pieces of furniture.

The cupboards and refrigerator were filled with food. The bathroom had towels and there was bedding folded neatly on the beds. The women walked around the small apartment with tears pouring down their cheeks.

You would have thought it was a lakefront mansion with the awe and appreciation they expressed.

They said, "No one has ever done anything so nice for us our whole lives. We never had nice clean things before. We never had a refrigerator with food in it that we could eat without being punished." They both looked at me and the volunteers and with broken voices said, "We are so grateful for everyone at The Time Is Now to Help."

The girls told me how they would be beat by their mother if they tried to eat any of the food. The mother would tell them they would have to wait until the mother was hungry, while they had to watch their mother drink alcohol. There were times the mother would say they did not need food and force them to drink alcohol until they were sick.

Once they had to go to court for abuse/neglect charges due to multiple complaints from neighbors. They never removed the girls from the home because the courts had no legal grounds due to the weak laws in place to protect children. The girls endured daily beatings for over a month until the mother forgot.

Our final assistance was to provide them with gift certificates so they could purchase any remaining household necessities they would need and clothing for their jobs. They were so overwhelmed they even tried to refuse this assistance, saying we were being too generous. I assured them they were most worthy and deserving. This brought fresh tears to their eyes.

After several weeks we paid a surprise visit to our two young ladies. They were so excited to see us they invited us right in. They showed us the "treasures" they had found at a rummage sale held at the church they were now attending not only for a support group, but services every Sunday too.

The apartment was neat and even felt very homey. They said they were starting to trust a few new people from their church group as friends. They both had received raises at their jobs. I was so proud to see how they had moved forward. What a difference we made in the lives of these young women.

Once again, together we make our world a better place doing God's good works.

Health and Happiness, God bless everyone, W.C./Sal

Help needed

The Time Is Now to Help, P.O. Box 70, Pell Lake, WI 53157. The Time Is Now to Help is a federally recognized 501(c)3 charitable organization licensed in the states of Wisconsin and Illinois. You will receive a tax deductible, itemized thank you receipt showing exactly what every penny of your donation provided for the poverty stricken.

A very special thank you: Geneva National, Mark and Natalie Reno, Kunes' Country Auto Group, Walworth Fontana Rotary Foundation, Paul Ziegler/Ziegler Charitable Foundation, Dick and Jean Honeyager, Martin Business Group, Russo Drywall, Victoria Wertz, Lillian Rudolf, David and Wallie Leitzke, Milton and Carol Ann Ancevic, Nancy Yaeger, Darlene Bolton O'Neill, Sylvester and Virginina Seick, Edward and Kathryn Drexler, Frank J. Huml, Jr., Patricia Jankowski, David and Mary Riesland, Gerald and Joyce Byers, Geri Hinton, Anthony and Penny Hendrickson, Arlene Clausen, Jerome and Susan Kuta, Steven and Mary Feuer, Anna Kiel, Katrina Grant, Dan and Regina Mehring, W.C. Family Resource Center/Food Pantry volunteers, and all the God loving volunteers of all our caring food pantries, ALL of you who support The Time Is Now to Help donation boxes, and the businesses that allow our donation boxes. Anyone who would like a Time Is Now donation box in your business, please call (262)249-7000.

Memorials:Jody, Craig Jr., and Cara Cook in honor and memory of loving husband and father Craig Cook's birthday. He is missed everyday by his family and friends.

The following donations were given in memory of John E. Peterson: Village of Plainfield, Robert and Mary Winter, and Laurence and Beverly Fleming.

Carol Latta and the Russ Latta family in memory of Deborah Kugler.

American Legion Hall Post 24 Time Is Now Fundraiser: The Lake Geneva American Legion Hall Post 24, 735 Henry St., Lake Geneva, will be holding an all you can eat Smelt and Cod Fish Fry on Friday, September 28, 2012, 4:30-8:00 p.m. Proceeds to benefit The Time Is Now to Help.

Chris Ann's Resale Shop: I will continue to ask Chris Ann's Resale shop for furniture and household necessities to help our poverty stricken fellow Americans. If you have anything you would like to donate to Chris's shop please call (262)348-9088. They are located at 406 Hwy. 120 North, Lake Geneva, WI, in the old Floor Store building across from the Shell gas station and Next Door Pub.

Need cars

Please donate a used car to help our fellow American's get to work and other daily necessities.

Goodsearch for The Time Is Now: Search the web with www.goodsearch.com and help to raise funds for The Time Is Now to Help. Just make www.goodsearch.com your homepage and pick The Time Is Now to Help as your charity.

Please visit: www.timeisnowtohelp.org


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