Starting over

A trusted family member took financial advantage of Elizabeth, age 73, while she was recovering from heart surgery. Her money was gone, and she was evicted when she couldn’t pay her rent. She knocked on a kind neighbor’s door. “I had nowhere to go. I asked if I could sleep on her porch,” Elizabeth remembers. The neighbor took Elizabeth in for eight months, and helped her secure public housing. In the meantime, Elizabeth also agreed to assume care of her great-nephew, a teenager whose father had abandoned him and whose mother had died when he was a child.

Elizabeth had lost everything she owned during the eviction. The case manager from the agency that helped Elizabeth access kinship care services called PA 2-1-1 Southwest and explained that Elizabeth and her greatnephew had no clothes, furniture or household basics. Just four days later, with assistance from the Emergency Basic Needs Fund, Elizabeth received deliveries of new living and bedroom furniture and essential items provided through other resource referrals.

Elizabeth has always worked hard. She never imagined that her life would change so dramatically in such a short time—that she’d lose everything and have a child to raise again in her 70’s. She’s spunky, her case manager says, and up for the challenge. She’s also glad to know she can rely on PA 2-1-1 Southwest, so she doesn’t have to do it alone.