Source: Lake Geneva Regional News

A grandmother in need

March 01, 2012

Dear W.C.,

Several months ago I took in my two grandchildren. My daughter was raising her children in a terrible environment. I did not know they had been homeless for a few months because they lived out of state. They were going from shelter to shelter each night and my daughter was too proud to tell me. My daughter used to be able to support her children on her own but she told me first her ex-husband stopped paying child support and then she lost her job due to the economy.

She tried so hard to find another job and track down the childrens’ father for child support, but neither were found. After they lived in homeless shelters for a few months she called me in desperation. She did not want to burden me with this as she knows I am struggling to survive on my social security. I lived in a one bedroom apartment, but had to move into a larger apartment to take in my grandchildren.

This was supposed to only be temporary but my daughter is still living in a homeless shelter in another state. The last time we spoke she sounded hopeless, due to the recession she cannot find a good job. Right now I am behind a month in my rent. I had to take my granddaughter to the dentist because she had a terrible toothache. She had two cavities. I could not deny dental care to my other grandchild so I also brought her.

I felt this was necessary for their well-being but was not prepared for how expensive it was. I worry I am not capable of taking on this most important task of caring for my grandchildren, and do not want to end up in a homeless shelter with them. They need security in their lives right now. Could you please help us?

Caring Scared Grandmother

Dear Readers,

I continue to receive many letters from caring grandparents raising their grandchildren. Ever since I first started The Time Is Now To Help, I have noticed the ever increasing amount of grandparents struggling to raise their grandchildren.

God bless them for their love and strength to take over when their own children are incapable of providing the care and support necessary to raise children. I have seen grandparents in wheelchairs, walking with walkers, canes, and some middle aged, trying to raise young children, stepping in to fulfill a role usually reserved for much younger parents. Yet, most are very capable and loving.

When I met this grandmother I noticed how she walked with a cane, and obviously struggled with her own disabilities. Yet she had an energy about her when the grandchildren were present. When the grandchildren were not present I saw the fatigue, stress, and worry the grandmother hid so well. When I first met at the grandmother’s apartment both grandchildren were present. The grandchildren were 10 and 13.

The grandmother introduced me to both children and they very politely shook my hand. Then the youngest grandchild said, “That is what Grandma told me I am supposed to do when I meet someone.” I told them, “Your Grandma is right teaching you such good manners.” With that they smiled and hugged their grandmother. I could see the bond they had formed in the last few months. I spoke with the children a little more and they briefly mentioned their not having their own home when living with their mother.

Then the older grandchild said, “We miss our mom, but living with grandma is so much better. We do not have to pack up every morning and move out. We do not have to wait in line for food or a bed every day. It was the worst when we got in line too late and had to sleep in a park huddled together to keep warm.” I felt so sad listening to this young child telling me about the life of a homeless person in our great United States of America. I told the grandchild that I was there to help. The grandmother told the children to go in the other room so we could talk.

After the grandchildren left the room the grandmother told me what little more she knew about her daughter and their financial problems. We also talked about the dental and other expenses of the children. She would need additional income to cover the many expenses of the children. The grandmother had been rationing food and watching their utility usage.

She had taken the children to clothing outreach centers for clothes and they had been to the food pantry for food. Her biggest fear was paying the past due rent and maintaining her car for the many errands she now needed to drive to. I promised her we would help her with both the past due rent and car repairs. We also provided some food and gas vouchers. Dental care was offered at a discount by a caring and sharing dentist.

When the children came back into the room I noticed their shoes were in terrible shape and offered to provide new shoes for them. I explained to all of them how The Time Is Now To Help is made possible by all of us coming together caring and sharing to help those who have fallen on hard times. The children really understood the kindness all of you provide. They were all so very grateful for this assistance provided by your caring and sharing kindness.

I contacted the daughter/mother of the children. She was terribly heartbroken and ashamed. After a few very extensive conversations and her mother’s love, she agreed to come live with them. She turned out to be a very intelligent person, but heartbroken like millions of other Americans not being able to find a job. Our networking worked to find her a job, not a great job, but a good job.

Presently after our initial help with rent, utilities, car repairs, and assistance with a job, their budget is good. The mother is proud to be working, providing for her children and loving to be with her mother. As she put it, they are, “catching up on life.” When I saw the grandmother she walked to me, dropped her cane, hugged me with both arms and cried. I hugged her back, crying myself, thanking God we, all of us, were there to put their lives back together. What an honor it is to help each other. Thank you for helping those who have fallen on hard times.

Together we make a big difference in the lives of many. God Bless all of you for making all our good works possible.

Health & Happiness, God Bless Everyone, W.C./Sal

Please remember the Fox Charities $25,000 Matching Grant. We are almost to our goal of $25,000. Please help us reach our goal. Every dollar you donate will be matched by another, doubling you assistance for our poverty stricken fellow Americans. A Big Thank You to everyone for supporting The Time Is Now To Help. Together we make a big difference in the lives of our fellow creations.

Please Help: Make checks payable to: 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: Turner Broadcasting System, Bill & Lois McEssy/McDonald’s, Fox Charities, Kunes’ Country Auto Group, Greater Milwaukee Foundation Shapiro Family Fund, Clarence & Marilyn Schawk Family Foundation, Paul Ziegler & the Ziegler Charitable Foundation, Petco Foundation, Lake Geneva Petco, Martin Business Group, Engineered Reflector Products, Dick & Jean Honeyager, James & Marilyn Dyer, Martin O’Brien, Egg Harbor Cafe, The Bark Market, Lauderdale Lakes Yacht Club, Lake Geneva Lioness Club, James & Marilynn Dyer, Betty Doebert, Jack Mallory, Mary Willms, Serene Altman, Geri & James MacGregor, Frances Eddy, Linda Andersen, Laurie Holtan, John & Violet Hotzfeld, Geraldine Hinton, Gerald & Joyce Byers, Garrett & Lisa Sullivan, Donald & Serina Sovick, Sidney Johnson, Dennis & Carol Frederick, 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: Julie Von Bergen in memory of her father Ralph Davis. Jody Cook in loving memory of her husband Craig Cook. Craig Jr. & Cara Cook in loving memory of their father. Craig Cook, Sr. was a wonderful man who made a great impact on many teachers, students, & families in the community. We all miss you Craig.

We Desperately Need Cars: Please donate a used car to help our fellow American’s get to work and other daily necessities.

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