The Need is Real

I Couldn’t Pay Our Rent

Back Story

Consuela, a young mother of two girls living in Alexandria, made the brave decision to leave her abusive husband to protect her girls and herself from future battering. Despite not being able to drive, she found her way to Leesburg, settling her little family into a safe basement apartment in the center of town.

Crisis

With a determination to start fresh and make her girls proud, Consuela began a job cleaning rooms at a local hotel but found she couldn’t pay the full amount of her $500 rent on time – she simply hadn’t received her first paycheck.

Loudoun Cares Connects

Loudoun Cares quickly stepped into action to help Consuela by tapping into its network of faith-based organizations to secure the remaining $350 she needed to pay her rent on time. Six-months later, when Loudoun Cares contacted Consuela with a surprise to share, she reported doing well in her job and able to pay rent each month on her own. And the surprise? As part of a local Toys for Tots program, Loudoun Cares selected Consuela’s family to be one of eight families to receive donated Christmas gifts that December. On Christmas morning, Consuela was greeted with big eyes and squeals of delight when her daughters discovered bikes, Barbies, toys and new clothes under the tree – a first-ever Yuletide experience for her little girls.

We Were Desperate and Had Nowhere Else to Turn

Back Story

Every year, an estimated 200,000-300,000 El Salvadorans flee their homes to escape brutal conditions, often forced to move multiple times without any hope of stability. Like so many refugees from El Salvador, Roberto and his young nephew Mateo fled their violent and impoverished country for a chance at a safer life in the United States. Years spent in refugee camps – including several in which the two were separated – made Roberto and Mateo’s journey to Northern Virginia long and trying.

Crisis

It seemed impossible, but Roberto and Mateo’s situation turned for the worse when the bus they were traveling on from Richmond to Sterling caught fire, leaving them with nothing. An attorney from an aide organization in Washington, DC contacted Loudoun Cares to assist this desperate pair, who needed clothes, a place to live and basic furniture to begin their new life in the U.S.

Loudoun Cares Connects

The team at Loudoun Cares helped Roberto and Mateo by first contacting the Good Shepard Alliance to secure vouchers from local Hopes & Treasures stores, where the family could buy basics like a simple rug and a warm jacket. Loudoun Cares also made a critical connection with Inmed that helped Mateo begin the early Headstart program at age 4. Doing so allowed Roberto to begin work and provide support for his family here and back in El Salvador.

I Was Facing Eviction

Back Story

Loudoun County is one of the wealthiest counties in the nation, but it’s also where you’ll find older residents like 69-year old Jenny living paycheck-to-paycheck to cover rent and eat enough each month. The high cost of living in LoCo makes it hard for many of the area’s elderly, who often rely on income from social security or lower paying jobs, to survive. Getting by on a fixed income, Jenny was employed at a temp agency but didn’t have steady enough work to cover her bills consistently.

Crisis

Jenny eventually found a full-time job and was pursuing her real estate license but still fell behind on her rent. Despite her hard work ethic and determination to be self-reliant, Jenny was putting her whole paycheck toward bills, with little leftover to buy groceries. Facing eviction and not getting enough to eat – even while steadily working – didn’t seem possible.

Loudoun Cares Connects

Loudoun Cares recognized how committed Jenny was to support herself and quickly stepped up to get her through this temporary hurdle. With the additional support of Divine Mercy Outreach, Loudoun Cares contributed the last $350 she needed to prevent eviction and connected her with Loudoun Hunger Relief’s food bank. Jenny is now fully back on her feet, earning a healthy paycheck working for an area builder and continuing to work toward earning her real estate license.

My Illness Left Me Homeless

Back Story

Tom should have been at the prime of his life, but instead this 54-year old was facing stage 4 cancer, unable to work and fighting for his life. His wife had a full-time job as a custodian at INOVA hospital, where Tom was receiving treatment, but her salary wasn’t enough to cover their mounting bills.

Crisis

Facing eviction in five days, Tom contacted Loudoun Cares and was assisted along with Catholic Charities in paying his rent. But despite being approved for social security disability a few months later, Tom checked in with Loudoun Cares once again, this time with the news that he and his wife were now homeless. The couple was trying to save for a security deposit and first month’s rent to move into a new apartment; meanwhile, they were unable to stay at the homeless shelter due to Tom’s illness. Were there funds available for temporary housing until his first social security check came in to allow them to move into the new apartment, Tom wondered?

Loudoun Cares Connects

Loudoun Cares’ call specialist sprang into action, reaching out to INOVA’s patient advocate, the Patient Advocate Foundation, the American Cancer Society and other groups, but no funds were immediately available for this type of temporary housing assistance. As a last-ditch effort, Loudoun Cares reached out to Life for Cancer to advocate on Tom’s behalf. In turn, Life with Cancer reached out to the INOVA Foundation for employees and the couple was funded for an extended stay until they were able to move into their new apartment.

Our Electricity Was About to be Disconnected

Back Story

Local residents Bob and Carol lived on a tight fixed income, relying mostly on their monthly social security checks and food stamps through SNAP. The elderly couple was also enrolled in the energy assistance program, but with so little money to work with, Bob and Carol could barely cover their monthly rent and had fallen behind with their electric bill.

Crisis

The couple’s daughter Kim called Loudoun Cares on a Thursday morning in a panic. Her parents couldn’t cover that month’s $257 electric bill and were told their power would be disconnected the following day. Kim had contacted a few other large charities directly for assistance but didn’t realize the process to receive help could take weeks because of the paperwork required. Her parents didn’t have that kind of time.

Loudoun Cares Connects

Through Loudoun Cares’ large network of faith-based resources and organizations, getting Kim’s parents help they needed that very day was possible. Through a local church’s generosity, Loudoun Cares helped Bob and Carol pay their electric bill before a power shut off.

Platinum/gold sponsors

Loudoun Cares wants to thank all our sponsors for their continued support. With the help of our partners, we can continue to provide life-sustaining and life-enriching resources to the residents of Loudoun County.