Spring Forward MN
Rachel's Light successfully opened September 2019. Since opening, we have received over 124 referrals and have provided housing for a combined total of 46 women and children. It costs approximately $415 per day to operate Rachel's Light. We not only provide shelter but also support and a place of belonging for those who have found themselves without a place to call home. The women are provided with a mentor that can follow them when they leave our home to help them maintain their self-sufficiency. Please help us to bring the homeless home and show them that love wins!
A Success Story: My Journey
By: A Former Guest at Rachel’s Light
Rachel’s Light has helped me in so many ways that I am grateful to them forever. Since I moved to Rachel’s Light, I gained so many things Including my physical health, my mental health, and continued sobriety. I have had so much help from Rachel’s Light staff that I have been able to obtain a vehicle, receive disability benefits, see my grandchildren again, and perform some work. I am grateful for the big heart the staff have here at Rachel’s Light to help me recover from some of the darkest days of my life. They try to help people in any way they can. They are a blessing in my life. I am in the best place I have ever been in my whole life.
My story starts when I was raped at the young age of 15. My perpetrator planned the rape which left me with a lifetime of scars. I started using drugs to cope with the trauma of the rape; stealing from my parents, in an out of treatment which helped for only a short time until I started feeling the pain of the rape again. At 16 years of age, I found myself pregnant. I was so young, and I did not know much about being pregnant. I used throughout my pregnancy and I had no real idea that it would affect my child. I went to treatment twice, sending my daughter into the foster care system and me on probation for breaking the law.
When I turned 32 years old, I had decided I had enough, and I wanted to change my lifestyle. I stopped using and got on my knees and prayed to God to take my addiction away. I started attending church services and then someone in the church took me to a meeting and this is the first time I started to feel better. I was scared and afraid to share my story with others. I was providing foster care services for adults in my home at this time. I was active in my daughter and grandchildren’s lives. Things were going well for me and then my daughter started to take pain medications, and this escalated to heroin use.
Soon, CPS was involved, and the kids were removed from her care. I took them into my home and provided care for them, but the county terminated my daughter’s parental rights and they were placed up for adoption. We knew the family that adopted them, and I trusted them to continue to allow me to be a part of the kid’s life since I had been sober for many years and was working.
One day, the kids were just gone. The family that had adopted them had vanished and I could no longer have contact with them. They cut all ties with me and I gave up. I packed everything up that I had and ended the lease where I was renting. I thought my life was over. I tried to find an alternative place to live but without much hope or will to live I ended up at the Dorothy Day House in Rochester. I stayed for a short period of time before I was in a car accident. Several hospitalizations and several other homeless shelters I came to live at Rachel’s Light. I am finally in the right mind. I finally have reconnected with my grandkids. The support, love, and big hearts at Rachel’s Light mean the world to me. Rachel’s Light has helped set me up for success. We have worked together as a team, and I now have SSI. I also can proudly say I will be moving into my own place as of March 1, 2021. I am forever grateful for all that Rachel’s Light has done for me. Love Wins