Growing Up With Wynona’s House Family
Family Advocates work tirelessly to assist families we serve, even years after the abuse has occurred. One such case is of a teenage girl sexually abused in 2011 when she was only six years old. We will call her Jane. Abuse threatened to leave a profound mark on Jane and her family and added an extra burden to the family’s already difficult situation. They struggled financially, and their immigration status was still pending. Their English proficiency was limited and further increased their worry about the case and their ability to obtain help. Our Spanish-speaking Family Advocates did everything in their power to help Jane and her family deal with the abuse and start the road to healing and recovery while ensuring that that they feel comfortable and safe. Family Advocates provided the family with food and clothing and connected them to various resources in the community to further aid them in recovery. Jane completed therapy at our own Regional Diagnostic and Treatment Center (RDTC), and her parents attended the Spanish-speaking parent group. Family Advocates also assisted the family with the relocation and immigration process. The family was very supportive of Jane, and they actively participated in all her therapy sessions. They attended all our family engagement events. They were so appreciative of all the support they received from Wynona’s House.
After they completed treatment and achieved some stability, they wanted to express their appreciation by volunteering during our community events. They refer to our Family Advocate as their “angel” during a very dark time. Jane is an honor roll student at her school and continues to thrive. Several months ago, Jane’s family mentioned that Jane needed a new laptop. Her old one was freezing all the time, hindering her ability to attend school virtually. Her family could not afford the expense. With the help of our RDTC, the Family Advocate provided Jane with a brand-new laptop for Christmas to help with her studies. Jane and her family were in tears. A few weeks later, our team received the following thank you letter.
“I am writing this to tell you how grateful I am for [the] wonderful surprise of purchasing the laptop for me! When I first received it, I was speechless since I would have never imagined that I would receive such a big and amazing gift. This is so meaningful to me as well because this can really help me with my studies as well as further my knowledge in school. This laptop can accompany me and help me even while I am in college, and I can only do this because of your help. My parents always support me and encourage me to do well in school, and because of them, I currently have a 4.33 GPA (now a sophomore in high school), and I am this motivated in school because of my parents and because I have big dreams for my future. But because my family does not have the highest income, they stress about the incoming challenged we will face since college can be very difficult to avoid debts. So, thank you for thinking about me and my family. I have grown up with the Wynona’s House family, and I can assure you that I have unlimited trust and deep respect for this amazing and admirable community. From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much for caring and thinking about me.”
Jane plans to go to college, and she will be the first one in her family to do so. Her family is at the end of their immigration process, and they will all soon become permanent residents. Even though the abuse almost shattered their lives, thanks to the great work of our Child Advocacy center and partnerships in the community, they are slowly but surely, inching closer to achieving their American Dream.