Matt is a single elderly man who has resided in his trailer for 10+ years. He is a bit of a hoarder and due to this, has been given a “15 day Cure or Vacate” letter. This means he had to clean up his lot or be evicted. Matt and our Housing Solutions Navigator contacted the attorney working with the landlord. The attorney was willing to work with Matt and will give him extra time, if he makes “substantial progress”. Matt has lined up someone to take all of his 1000lbs of aluminum cans as well as the 30+ boxes of wiring. This should help resolve the situation and encourage Matt to improve his living conditions while being able to stay in his home.
Victoria is an elderly woman living on a fixed income. As the years have gone by, her income has not been able to keep up with increasing expenses. Food and prescriptions are taking a bigger portion of her income every month, and lately she has had difficulty setting aside enough to pay her rent. After falling behind, she came to us to ask for help. Our Client Services team was able to negotiate a payment plan with her apartment management company and Victoria now has a plan to pay her rent in full, avoiding eviction.
Meet Private Robert*
When Robert returned from active duty in Kuwait earlier this year, he came back to one of the most difficult job market in decades. As soon as he returned to the area in February, he started applying for any position for which he was qualified. Six months later, he hadn't found work and he and his wife were running out of ideas.
Robert's wife came to see us, worried and afraid because their electricity had been turned off and they were at risk of losing their apartment. She was strong, resilient and responsible, but she didn't know what else to do. Even though family and friends had been able to help initially, they too were stretched thinly and couldn't help further.
Our Client Advocates were able to direct Robert and his wife to the Veteran's Assistance Fund, for which they were eligible, giving them $900 they didn't know they could receive. Then we recommended they speak with the lender of their car loan - they had only one car and were 6 months from paying it off, but we know that sometimes lenders will work out arrangements with struggling customers. In this case, they agreed to suspend payments for 2 months and extend the loan for that period until Robert and his wife could work out other arrangements.
When we saw this family again, Robert was in line for a part time job at Bangor, enough to get them through until something better comes along. The VA Fund provided a great shot in the arm and the suspension of car payments was just what they needed to restabilize.
When Mildred called Fishline recently, it took all of her courage. In her 87 years in Poulsbo, she hadn't ever asked for help. Never rich but always able to make it, Mildred and her husband farmed and worked hard while raising their three children. Between their retirement and Social Security, they had enough to cover the bills and put a little aside. But Mildred's husband passed away a couple of years ago, making it harder for her to pay for the house, the rising bills, prescriptions and food. Little by little, she dipped into her savings to pay the bills. She didn't tell her children because, as she put it, "they already work so hard to keep up with their expenses, I didn't want to worry them." By the time she came to Fishline, her savings was gone and her phone, a lifeline for a homebound senior, was about to be disconnected. She had been having many sleepless nights, wondering how she could solve these problems. She even said, "I guess I could try to find a job"....
But when Mildred called, she wasn't sure she was really eligible for our help. She felt there were so many others needing the help more. We explained that by shopping at Fishline for her food, Mildred would be able to save a great deal of money each month, which could be used to pay for her phone bill or prescriptions. And because she was homebound, we could arrange for a weekly delivery of her groceries every Thursday. We assured her there was always enough at our food bank for everyone. After our talk, Mildred slept well that night, the first night in weeks. And our deliveries of food offer us a valuable chance to check in with her and make sure she is doing well.
Meet Aimee*Aimee and her three children found themselves homeless in another Washington City. Her father invited her to come up and live with him in the North Kitsap area. After a week or so, he informed her he sold his house and she had to move. She still had not obtained employment nor did she have a vehicle yet. Because she was new to the area, she did not know anyone nor did she know where to turn to for help. A local apartment manager directed her to Fishline. One of the “One Church One Family” homes was available and she quickly became a perfect match. She is working toward getting on her feet.
Meet S.*S is a veteran of the US Navy. She has her Masters degree and did private contract work with the US Government for years. After her last contract ran out, she has had a difficult time finding employment, including 24+ jobs applied for. Her sister reluctantly allowed her to live in her home, but finally said she had to move. S has two small dogs and therefore could not access shelters. With a loan against a family heirloom, she was able to secure a motor home and has a strong lead on a possible job. Her sister has allowed her to stay on her property with the motor home for now. S has contacted Patty Murray’s office to discuss the lack of housing for veterans and individuals with animals. She also did a phone interview with a news station. Although S is a strong woman and can advocate for herself, she found herself without any support. What Fishline was able to offer her is guidance for locating housing, RV parks, employment, plus other resources. The most important thing that we were able to offer was an ear to listen and support so she knows she is not alone.
*Whenever reading a client's story, the image depicted is not of the actual person being referenced.