Chilo’s Story of Transformation
A New Family for the Holidays
Chilo and her young son had never experienced a real family Christmas before. Until now.
For many people, Christmas and the holiday season are a joyful, special time, filled with memories of time spent with loving friends and family. For others, however, there are no joyful memories.
Chilo, a 25-year-old single mother at My Sister’s House has few happy memories from her childhood. “I was adopted,” she says. “It was rough because I was always the outcast in the family. High school wasn’t any better. I was the lame one at school, everyone always picking on me.”
Then, when she graduated from high school, her family told her she would have to leave home. “They didn’t want me. I didn’t have a job or anywhere to go. The past six years, I just jumped from house to house. I never had anything of my own,” she says.
In 2016, Chilo gave birth to her only son, Anthony. But by the summer of 2017, she was truly homeless.
“For a long time, I never felt like God heard my prayers,” she says. “But then He gave me this chance to start over. Now I say, ‘thank you, Lord.’”
The Support She Never Got
Atlanta Mission immediately surrounded Chilo and Anthony with an entire support team of advocates, social workers, vocational training managers, counselors, educators, spiritual guides, and friends to address the root causes of her homelessness and give her hope for the first time in her life.
“Over the past year, I’ve grown so much,” she says. “The people here helped me through everything and let me know I’m not alone. These are the only people who ever supported me. They taught me how to be a better mother, they’re helping me get certified as a Certified Nursing Assistant, and they’re helping me find housing. Atlanta Mission and my son are the only family I have.”
Finally, last year, at My Sister’s House, Chilo and Anthony experienced their first special Christmas with “family” and friends, filled with new happy memories.
“I want to thank the donors for everything,” she says. “Thanksgiving, Christmas, birthdays, new clothes, new career, and a new life. They made it all possible.”
Ways to Give
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