Fawn’s life quickly took a turn.
The 45-year-old single mother of three and grandmother found herself homeless again after a job loss and eviction. She was living in a program with her two younger children, but time was limited.
“The program where we were living wasn’t going to extend my stay,” Fawn said. “They wouldn’t even give me two months for the kids to finish school…just that quick. I got evicted and then I lost my job and then, it just went down the drain.”
Fawn was living on the streets while 10-year-old Jaydin and 15-year-old Kiko stayed with their older sister. Just as Fawn was losing hope, she received a call from the Samaritan House homeless shelter in downtown Denver. It had space for her and her two children.
“When I came in, I wanted to lay our bags down, and just get them off our shoulders and sleep on a bed,” Fawn said.
Watch Fawn and her family
In addition to providing food, shelter and clothing, Samaritan House gives families in need a program with case management and supportive services to help them achieve stability and self-sufficiency.
“A lot of times our families come to us and they’ve been through a lot,” said Chris O’Connell, family services case manager at Samaritan House. “They’ve been beaten. They’ve been pushed around. They’ve had the trauma. We really want to spell out that pathway for success and make sure that it’s lasting.”
Fawn found the support she needed to rebuild her life. She used the program to her advantage by taking available classes for substance abuse prevention, finances and more. She started to regain hope.
“I think this place gave me the support, because they knew I could do it,” Fawn said. “They knew I could do it. I was very broken, very broken when I got here. I mean, I’m 45. And I just thought, I’m not good enough.”
The family floor staff also offered children’s activities in a fun and safe environment.
“I love Samaritan House because I’ve got happy memories from here, very happy memories,” Jaydin said.
Kiko said, “The people are so nice, and they’re so kind and they actually help. They actually listen. They take their time out, their own time, even off work if they can.”
In the spring, Fawn and her family moved into their own place together. They feel confident and stronger now that they’re on the right path.
Join the Friends of Sam House campaign to renovate the shelter
Samaritan House began a multiyear renovation to improve and expand services for individual and family residents at the aging shelter. Now 32 years old, the remodel began with the kitchen and new lighting in August. In the next phase, we will complete the family floor and building new heating systems.
For information on the renovations and how to make contributions, email Tom Wanzeck, vice president operations, at TWanzeck@ccdenver.org.