Know them.

When stereotype becomes story, everything changes. 


By Jane Farstrider

So much can change when we treat people like they matter

Life leaves its marks on all of us, and breaking generational cycles is never an easy thing. For Katie, there were times it seemed nearly impossible. “I’ve dealt with homelessness pretty much my entire life,” she says, “so that was kind of a constant.” Her childhood was tumultuous, and whenever her family was forced to move, Katie’s world would be turned upside down all over again.

Katie says she spent most of her childhood moving from place to place in Idaho, Montana, and North Dakota, fighting for stability and often staying with her grandmother while she was in school. “We were always kind of running from something,” she says.

When she grew up, Katie did her best to put that behind her, building a life with a family of her own. It was when she was pregnant with her third child that she faced homelessness for the first time as an adult, but Katie says that she and her significant other were able to rebound pretty quickly.

They still struggled to make ends meet, but they managed. “It became something that was just normal,” Katie says. “Even when things were stable, as soon as we got to the end of a lease, it was like ‘time to look for somewhere new.’ I just had no concept of stability or structure and what that looks like.”

A few years later, Katie and her family were living in Spokane and she was expecting her fifth child. There were complications, though, and Katie would need a cesarean section to deliver. Afterward, Katie knew something was wrong, but was told that the swelling from her C-section was normal and that it would go away. As it turned out, her bowels had been herniated during the procedure and she would need extensive surgeries to repair the damage.

“I had done everything I could to stay as stable as I possibly could and then I ended up in the hospital for 9 weeks,” Katie says. “During that time we lost our home ― we lost everything we owned and we were discharged. Two, homeless with five kids. They were like ‘We don’t think you’re going to make it, but enjoy the time you have left.’ I had a hole in my stomach bigger than my head ― just gaping. And it had to heal from being inside out.”

That was in August of 2017. With nowhere to stay, an open wound that would take eight months to heal, four kids, and a newborn baby, the family had no easy choices. “Some nights we slept in bus stops or we’d walk around with the kids all night because there was nowhere safe to go,” says Katie.

In the meantime, Katie still needed medical attention. “We had to do GoFundMe’s just to get enough money for motel rooms on the days I needed to do dressing changes; so I’d have a place for the nurse to come meet us.” Those dressing changes needed to happen three times every week. “They’d stuff this thick sponge stuff in [the wound] and put a vacuum over it to suck it down. It would connect with the tissue, and they’d rip all that out. It was absolutely torture.”

The healing process took 8 months. “It was horrible,” Katie remembers, “not only fighting for my life, but feeling so incredibly alone.”

“Every agency that we went to trying to get help, they just treated us like we were drug addicts or like we chose this,” says Katie. “I remember people would refuse to help us because while I was going through all the surgeries, of course I was on pain medicine. They said ‘you have to stop taking it or you can’t come here,’ and there was no way I could physically do that at that moment. That really decreased all the options.”

The family stuck together and tried to get back on their feet, but nothing worked out as they hoped. “We ended up somewhere in Deer Park that was totally not safe. There’s a lot of people out there who prey on families who are in tough situations.”

“We ended up getting into the Salvation Army the same day [Family Promise] opened up Open Doors, and that was after two months of trying to make things work. Family Promise wasn’t what it is today, but it was a safe place to land.”

Katie smiles as she pulls out her phone to bring up a photo of her kids, sprawled out and sleeping soundly at the shelter. “My son says Family Promise is his second favorite place he ever lived,” says Katie. “To them it was like camp. They were all sleeping in the emergency shelter before the lights were even out. They were just totally ok. It was their safe place, and that meant everything. There were a lot of people who might not have appreciated it because they weren’t in that headspace.”

When the family eventually got into Richard Allen Court day shelter, having a place to do laundry and cook for her family was a really big deal for Katie. “With an open wound and pain, not being able to keep ourselves clean was horrible,” Katie says. “Just having a place where we could make food, especially as a mother … it gave me so much of my pride back, being able to cook for my kids.”

Katie reflects on the struggles they faced along the way, and the toll homelessness can take on a person’s self-image. “People say, ‘I don’t understand it, there’s jobs!’ But how are you going to get your clothes clean to even get that job? How do you make sure you have the food to eat to make it through? How do you get there?”

“Interviews aren’t easy for those of us who really believe we deserve it; but when you’re in the street, you don’t feel like you deserve anything.” She adds, “I used to say I felt like the trash of society. Especially as a mom, because you’re supposed to protect your kids and you're supposed to keep everything ok.”

The resources Katie and her partner found through Family Promise finally made it possible for them to work toward their goals. “As soon as we got here, we started taking classes at WorkSource through Rise,” Katie says. “Getting plugged into the community really changed everything. It gave us hope; feeling like we’re not stuck in this and we can make something different.

The volunteers made a lasting impression on Katie. “They chose to be here,” she says. “They took time out of their life to make us feel seen and loved, and that was probably one of the greatest impacts. There was a volunteer named Kathy who used to just sit in the kitchen and cook with me and talk about everyday stuff, and that was so different.”

While staying in the shelter, Katie started working at SCRAPS through Rise’s employment program and her partner got a job doing commercial carpet cleaning. “That 200-hour class through WorkSource helped me learn I could change things. It might not be overnight, but little by little, it could be done,” Katie says. “It was amazing. I’m so grateful for that program.”

Katie says that her partner used to go up to Work Source and sleep whenever in their parking garage while she was in class. “I was so proud of him for not giving up when we were in the shelter. He was doing commercial carpet cleaning and it was not easy. We didn’t have a car and he’d have to get rides back and forth, but he continued working.”

Even with their new jobs, finding housing they could afford for a family of seven was going to be a challenge. So when a complete stranger decided to remove that obstacle from their path after hearing about her family through his church, Katie was floored.

“Our landlord actually bought our home without ever meeting us. He just heard part of our story, and he said God told him that one was on him. So he bought a six-bedroom house to rent out to our family and had someone else come ask me if I was interested.” Of course, Katies says, she and her family were thrilled.

Their new landlord closed on the house and remodeled it before they moved in. Katie says “For a six-bedroom house we pay $1,000 per month, so that is unheard of here!”

While they waited for the remodel, Katie and her partner kept on working, managing a hectic shuffle between their jobs and the shelter with the kids. “We had moved from Open Doors to Salvation Army for a short period of time just because we worked,” she explains.

“My significant other worked nights and he would work from 6 p.m. to 4 a.m., but no matter what, he’d have to be up at 6. He’d get back to the shelter at 4, sleep until 6, get up, and be up with the kids.” So the family moved to the Salvation Army’s intermediate shelter for a couple of weeks to make the transition a little easier.

Finally, the house was ready for them to move in.

“We had been struggling for years, and it was probably 3 months total until we were ready to move into our new home,” Katie says. “We’ve been there ever since. It’s the longest I’ve lived anywhere in my entire life, so I feel like I’ve finally been able to give my kids that stability I never had.”

These days, Katie says that they’re all doing better with that stability. “The kids are doing so good. My oldest two have been able to maintain straight A’s all the way through. The middle two struggle a little in school, but are just blossoming everywhere else,” Katie says with a smile.” She comments on how smart her youngest son is, now two years old.

Katie and her family made a lot of good friends at Family Promise, and found a sense of community at The Rock, a church they first started visiting when they were at the shelter.

Katie’s recovery from the complications of her first C-section was long and difficult, and after eight surgeries she felt lucky to be alive. But life still had some surprises in store for her. “After all those surgeries, they told me I could never have another baby. I didn’t intend to, so I had my tubes tied … and I still got pregnant and had another baby.”

“It was a huge shock and scary because of all the medical stuff,” she says, “and I thought, there is no way this is going to be ok.” But despite the odds, everything went well and now she has a healthy two-year-old boy.

Soon after connecting with Family Promise, Katie started working as an assistant supervisor in the shelter, which she loved. The people she met during some of the hardest days of her life soon became her co-workers and part of her growing community.

“Emma was the one person I really bonded to in a huge way, which is really great because now she’s my boss. Toya used to work here and was a huge support. I was kinda shell-shocked by all the different people, and they helped me feel grounded and feel safe. Serena really encouraged me to come back and saw my potential” Katie says.

Katie says she feels that the struggles she faced were God’s way of helping her find her purpose. “When I was in the shelter, my main focus was always helping the people around me, which was what has always gotten me into trouble in my life,” Katie explains. “But this allowed me to find a way to do it and keep it out of my home life. You don’t have to bring people home to help them. This is really giving me an outlet to feed that part of my soul without hurting my family.”

“Now I’m a donor relations coordinator and connect with our donors and share our story and build impact. Every person who partners with us makes a huge difference and there is success,” she says.

“I really feel like they’re the first organization that doesn't just throw bandaids at it. They really get down to the reasons why a family can’t stay stable and then helps partner with them through that,” she continues. “[Family Promise] didn’t just get us into housing and leave us alone. Even at the beginning, there were things that came up and they helped with each and every one.”

The community connections Family Promise has with other vital organizations solutions were crucial for her family, Katie says. “Vanessa Behan was a huge resource for us so often with the little ones. They can watch the kids for up to 72 hours in any kind of crisis. When we’d go to pick up the kids they’d send us backpacks of new clothes and diapers, and letters telling us how great we were doing; to keep up the good work. They were a huge huge piece of support for us.”

“The first Christmas we were in a house, [Family Promise] had somebody sponsor us. It was Windermere, I think. We hadn’t been able to do anything for the kids before that because we were in the middle of homelesseness and struggling … They brought an entire truckload of presents ― bikes for all the kids. It was amazing.”

Katie says that Family Promise goes way beyond meeting a family’s physical needs. “It’s just the little things. It’s not necessarily just about stability but the joy. Showing people that they matter.”

“I think one of the biggest things is it's so incredibly powerful to be able to use all of the bad that happened to me to help other people. It makes it all worth it: every day that I suffered; every day that I was in pain. To know that I can make a difference to other families and that they’re never going to have to feel quite so alone.”

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Updated: Jun 14

By Jane Farstrider

With the disappearance of a promised job, Jax’s family of four was soon left out in the cold.

When the Arsenault family relocated from Idaho in 2017, homelessness was the last thing on their minds. Jax was a manager at a Popeyes in Twin Falls, and when she was offered a position running a new location that would soon be opening in Spokane, she started making plans right away.

As she tells her story, it’s immediately clear that Jax is most in her element when she’s taking action. She sees what needs to be done and gets right to it.

The family uprooted, rented an apartment in Spokane Valley, and waited for the store to open so she could start work. They kept waiting. Month after month, no store came. Jax and her husband Dennis grew worried as time kept passing with no firm answer about an opening date, and their savings quickly disappeared.

Without months of income they had counted on, they soon lost their truck. Then they lost their apartment. When Jax tried filing for unemployment, she says they argued that she had just quit. The Spokane Popeyes location never opened.

“We had no friends or family here,” says Jax. With a 13-year-old daughter, a seven-year-old son, a dog, and no support system in a new city, she and Dennis didn’t have much to fall back on. An acquaintance from their apartment complex offered them a temporary place to stay, but It was close quarters for all of them.

Two more weeks passed, and they still had no work or housing. “Things were getting a little testy with two families in an apartment,” Jax says, in her matter-of-fact way. “She ended up telling us, ‘You can't stay here.’”

With no vehicle, nowhere to go, and a cold, February night ahead of them, they threw together a makeshift shelter to stay out of the elements and sleep. “We ended up digging a hole,” she says. “We put an emergency blanket underneath us, then blankets on top of that, and put an air mattress on top of us to keep out of the wind and out of the snow, and it kind of blended in … which was anything but ideal.”

It was an East Valley High School employee who gave the family the first bit of good news they’d had in a while. “My daughter was seeing a counselor at East Valley High School, and she told him that we were homeless,” Jax says. “He sent us a brochure about Family Promise.”

“I was doing Work Source and was in a class, so Dennis came and talked to Serena [the Family Services Manager] and another supervisor; he did a walk-through and saw the resources they had at the time.”

Afterward, Jax says they met up at McDonalds and Dennis told her “I came across a program at Family Promise. They only shelter families, so you and me and the kids can all stay together. It’s not going to be the best, but 100% better than what we're doing right now ― like running to a truck stop to grab a shower.”

“Asking for help was the hardest part,” she says. They decided they would go to Open Doors, an emergency day shelter at Family Promise, where they would have access to some much-needed essentials like food, showers, a place to do laundry, and computers. At night, they’d be shuttled to the Salvation Army’s night shelter.

“The worst part for me was the shuffle between the Salvation Army and Open doors,” Jax continues. Often they’d end up waiting outside for an hour or longer, hoping there would be room enough for everyone. Inside, there wasn’t much privacy and they’d do their best to sleep on thin, memory foam mats.

“My son adjusted pretty quickly,” says Jax. “To him it was just like a vacation; getting to hang out and play with friends every day … My daughter had a harder time ― she was focused on everyone else who needed help. It helped her get through it.”

Relocating had already been difficult for her teenage daughter, even before losing their home in a new town. “It hurt her really bad,” Jax says, “especially to watch the apartment take our stuff, knowing it wasn’t because of something we did.”

While they were working toward finding housing, another program they found through Family Promise made it possible for their daughter to continue attending East Valley High School. The Have a Heart program helped with transportation to school and bringing her back to the shelter each day.

30 days after coming to Open Doors, Jax found a new job with The Cleaning Authority, where she would end up working for the next three and a half years. Permanent housing took a little longer to figure out. “They were doing fewer housing assessments back then,” Jax recalls, but within 90 days they were approved for rapid re-housing through Catholic Charities.

“All four of us cried when we got rapid rehousing,” Jax says. Their new apartment was a two-bedroom, so Jax and Dennis opted to hang a curtain in the dining room, turning it into a master bedroom so the kids could each have their own space. “The kids really loved that ― the fact that mommy got put out and they both had a bedroom with a door,” says Jax, laughing.

With work and housing finally coming together, finding a reliable car was their next big challenge. Greg Plummer, who is on the board of directors at Family Promise, ended up donating a car to the family. “We still have it!” Jax says.

Dennis started volunteering at Family Promise, and before long he was hired on full time. Jax worked her way up from house cleaner to quality inspector in her three and a half years with The Cleaning Authority before looking for opportunities at Family Promise herself, helping with a little bit of everything.

“Within my first 30 days here, I was an assistant supervisor, then I was promoted to Supervisor, and then Donations Coordinator,” she says. “It wasn’t even something I was looking to do. I just kind of took over the supply room.” With a grin, she adds, “Assistant Manager is the next goal.”

When she talks about her work with Family Promise, Jax bubbles over with enthusiasm. For her, the connections she found there were life-changing, and she’s busily finding ways to make a difference in her new community. “I love making connections with other resources – I handle food and supply donations with the shelters,” she says. “Making relationships.”

Jax uses that skill to find businesses to partner with who can donate high-quality items for families in need. The new Amazon facility was a recent connection she made, and since they began donating, Family Promise has had a more consistent supply of everything from toilet paper and cleaning supplies, to electronics and produce. While they have an online list of needs that anyone can check, Jax explains that it’s harder to rely on individual donations alone.

“Being homeless teaches you how to be resourceful,” she says. “Tell me no, and I’ll find a way.” One of Jax’s favorite things about her work is being able to fulfill a very specific need someone might not expect; giving a new parent a baby carrier, for example. “When someone really needs something, I can hand it to them, and the smile in their eyes makes my day.”

“The best part about the program is the volunteers know what people are going through,” says Jax. People like Jax and Dennis, who have been through the program themselves, can reassure guests on their worst days that it really can get better.

She describes how discouraging it can be when a family hasn’t had any evictions, no late bills, and literally nothing holding them back other than having the money to put down on a place, wondering why they’re still waiting.

What Jax wants them to know is that it’s not the end. “It’s not over. It’s discouraging to see other people finding homes and feeling like it’s never going to happen for you … but you don’t know what obstacles another person has to go through versus what you have to go through. You never know, and you just have to be patient.”

“I know it’s hard, and it feels like when it rains it pours. Once you get into a shelter, it feels like your whole life just gets snatched from under you ― from a repo, or your clothes getting ruined, or losing important paperwork … You see all these people and think, ‘this is so crazy.’ But once you get to know people and you make a relationship; you make a family in the shelter. So not only do you have community outside, but you end up making a community inside, and having that helps.

“I love these people here,” she says. “Katie went through the program after me. Kermit and Melissa were there too, transporting people back and forth.”

If you’re having a really bad day, and you made a connection with another guest, it’s just like, you know, making a friend at work or something, and you have that person to vent to. It seems like the worst ― and it is ― but you can only go up from there.”

Against the odds, things can and do get better when people feel supported and safe. When they have a soft place to land and others who believe they can succeed.

“The hardest part of my job is when the families move out and go home,” Jax says. “I love that they are going home, but you have to start over with somebody new. We have to wait six months after they go through the program to reconnect and visit.”

With community support and partnerships, Family Promise has been able to expand the assistance they offer families experiencing homelessness. “They’ve grown so much since I came through,” says Jax. In recent years, Family Promise established their own overnight program, and guests now have access to more secure storage for their belongings. Each family gets a hall locker, a pantry locker with cold and dry storage, and a large outdoor locker for bigger items. That addition is a big deal, Jax explains, and recalls the stress of having no option but to stash her family’s belongings under a stairway, where the few things they had left could easily go missing.

Family Promise also added an aftercare program to provide support to families as they are getting re-established ― setting people up with high-quality furniture and household items to make it feel like home right away. “We never give people broken furniture,” she says, adding that that isn’t always the case with charity organizations. Sometimes aftercare includes helping with bills or restocking necessities when money is tight. “If they're having a rough month, they can reach out and we’ll gather up a food box for them,” Jax says. “We want to keep them in permanent housing and end that cycle of homelessness.”

Working with Vanessa Behan and Spokane Valley Partners gives guests access to things like childcare, diapers and wipes. “They’ll also help you once you get into permanent housing,” Jax says. “Even if you’re out of the shelter you can get assistance with diapers and wipes through them, but people have to make that connection themselves.”

“We have a connection with Global [Neighborhood Thrift], where we give them donations we couldn’t utilize here, and they work with us and our families in aftercare ― giving them vouchers they can come to the thrift store to get things they need.”

There is always a lot to be done, and Family Promise volunteers and staff are used to adapting to whatever the day might throw at them, taking it in stride. “It really helps when you like your co-workers,” says Jax. On a typical day, Jax says her co-workers probably only see her as she runs through the building, on her way to handling the next task. “From 8:30 til about 2:00, I’m running non-stop,” she says. “I don’t like to sit around ― I’m a busy bee.”

Jax wishes people understood how much closer the average person is to homelessness than they realize. “All it takes is not having a rainy day fund. It can take a car accident, and that just starts that domino effect and the next thing you know you’re out of options. Just because someone’s homeless doesn’t mean they’re a drug addict … it can be a disability, a mental health issue, or a job change.”

“A lot of times it’s hard to ask for help. All I want is for people to know that they can always ask. If you don’t ask, the answer is always going to be ‘no’.”

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By Jane Farstrider

Imagine, for a moment, that you are a hard-working mother with three young children. You, your husband, and kids sit in a run-down motel room, nearly 2,000 miles from your home state. The few resources your family had were enough to get you to Spokane, but neither of you has a job yet. The credit cards are maxed out. You have no way to pay for another night indoors. You’re exhausted, and the hope of finding a fresh start is turning to cold panic.

For Hailey VenHuizen, facing that stark reality pushed her to look for help she never thought she would need.

Hailey’s quiet determination is striking as she explains how they had struggled in Ligonier, Indiana before deciding to take a leap into the unknown and move across the country.

“Life in Indiana was not ideal for my family,” she says. “I was working 7 days a week from 2 p.m. - 3:30 a.m. to care for my family and catch up on the bills. Finally, when I was almost caught up on all of the bills, the rent had increased significantly and I fell behind. Again. I had received a notice to vacate my home and there were limited resources that would help with rental assistance. I prayed every day hoping God would hear me.”

When an old friend told Hailey and her husband about Spokane, they felt that the opportunities there would be worth leaving everything they knew behind.

In Indiana they didn’t have a support network, the educational options weren’t great, and resources for people struggling financially were sparse. “There wasn’t even a bus system,” she says. “We took our tax refund and escaped Indiana and never looked back.”

Hailey’s husband flew to Spokane in February of 2019, and Hailey followed in March with the kids, who were all between the ages of 1 and 5 at the time.

“The position that we were in was dreadful and embarrassing,” Hailey says. “Maybe we should've had a plan before we moved to Spokane, sure, but we also knew that if we had stayed in Indiana, our position would've been much worse.”

The beginning of it was terrifying. You feel like a horrible person having to put our kids through that, it is not fair. It was February, pouring rain and we were cold and soaked when we arrived at Family Promise’s Open Doors Shelter.

If it weren’t for Family Promise, we wouldn’t be alive today. We would’ve gone hungry and cold. We would’ve ended up under a bridge in a tent.

When they couldn’t afford another night at the motel, Hailey took action and started googling emergency family shelters, even though it made her deeply uncomfortable.

Hailey says that during this time, she knew she had to hold it together and be a positive role model for her kids.“How you feel on the inside is what you manifest on the outside,” she says. “You just keep going. Stopping is not an option.”

“I mustered up the courage to call Open Doors,” she says. “Katie Theobald answered my phone call. She was gentle and understanding and her warmth made me feel comfortable enough to explain the situation. Katie walked my family through the anxieties and fears that we were experiencing.”

With Katie’s instructions, they never had to face a night on the streets. Hailey and her family got into Open Doors, a day shelter run by Family Promise where they could safely stay together and work on next steps. “Once I had called and spoke to Katie, we were in the shelter the very next morning at 7 a.m.”

“What I love about Family Promise is that they keep the family together,” Hailey says. “On our first day, there was a table full of resources for school, childcare, and jobs.”

One of the brochures on that table was for the Vanessa Behan Crisis Center, where they were able to bring the kids while they searched for work and connected with other resources.

“I felt a lot of security,” Hailey remembers. “We felt safe, wanted, and comfortable. They gave me tools I needed to go home. I filled out an application for another Bridges program – where we’d have our own room for the day, and were taken to a church to stay overnight.” The Bridges transitional living program approved their family quickly, and there Hailey met Susan Heitsman, whose support was particularly impactful.

“Susan was helpful and had gone the extra mile to ensure my family would be successful. When I found a home, Susan and her husband helped us with finding and moving furniture into our new home. I miss her greatly.”

When trying to imagine where they might have ended up, Hailey says “I couldn’t tell you and I don't want to know. That whole experience was so scary, but Family Promise made me feel safe. We felt welcomed and wanted. Their staff is amazing. If you are in a shelter and you don’t feel safe, welcomed and wanted – you’re going to fail.”

They were able to get food stamps, and through a program called Work First, Hailey’s husband found a job as a frozen foods manager at WalMart, and Hailey enrolled in Spokane Community College’s nursing program.

While it was an enormous relief to be in transitional living, they were still anxious to find permanent housing, and once again the options were limited. On a whim, Hailey says she sent out an S.O.S on Craigslist.

“When I say S.O.S, I mean that I was at the point of giving up and shared my story in a post needing help,” Hailey explains. “There were hardly any homes available to my family, even with the housing choice voucher that we had received through Spokane Housing Authority.”

Two days later, a landlord who was touched by Hailey’s post reached out saying he owned a vacant house and wanted to provide a stable home for her and her family. Coincidentally, the house was directly across the street from a daycare where she would be able to take the kids while she was in school. “We were homeless for less than a month from the first day of our arrival in Spokane,” she says.

“If I was talking to someone in the position I was in years ago, I’d tell them to use those resources that are available and keep going,” Hailey says. “They were all wonderful and exactly what we needed to move forward. You need to have grit and patience while you’re on this journey – if you don’t you will fail.”

Hailey says a lot has changed for them in recent years. “We are healthy, happy and in the best position that we have ever been in. Family Promise made it possible for my family to be a part of the community just by providing us support to step into the right direction to achieve stability and success.”

Since 2019, Hailey hasn’t slowed down. Her experiences from that year motivated her to chase her own goals to help people facing similar challenges. With her medical training, compassion, and first-hand knowledge, she is looking for opportunities to get more involved with the program that helped her find her footing here.

“I would love to have a permanent position at Family Promise,” Hailey says. “I want to help other families navigate their own journey. I don't want them to feel alone. My journey was scary and it would've been much worse had I not had the support of Family Promise.”

But she hasn’t stopped there. Just recently, Hailey took the first steps of starting a business that she hopes will help fill in some of the gaps she saw back in 2019.

“My company is called Nest Haven Properties LLC. I have big plans that may just be the answer to our families struggling with permanent housing within the community. What my company will be doing is renovating distressed properties to make permanent housing available to families that hold the housing choice voucher.”

The space and privacy to raise their children during those crucial days made all the difference to her, and Hailey wants to provide that stability to other families experiencing homelessness. By creating job opportunities for them at the same time, she hopes to give people the foundation they need for long-term success.

“There are many apartment complexes that do provide housing,” she explains, “but that housing is not permanent. I want to get to the core of the problem that is in our community and provide housing for families when they leave the shelter.”

“I have these plans all written out with years of projections to show that this would be a success,” Hailey says. Her plans aren’t without setbacks, though. She says startup funding is her next hurdle, and she is hoping someone will listen long enough to see the potential in her plans. “There is no way that I will give up on pushing this company forward to launch,” she says.

“It is amazing how stable housing can make a world of a difference for one family,” she says. “Now that we are stable, I am able to help my community. If every homeless family in Spokane had stable housing, could you imagine what our community would be like?”

“Family Promise loved us like their own. They gave us warmth, food, and shelter. It was like a mom and dad helping us out.”

“It’s wonderful to have a future,” she says.

“I just need someone to believe that together we can end homelessness in Spokane by getting to the root of the problem.”

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