Jada’s Story

Photo and name changed in the interest of privacy.

Photo and name changed in the interest of privacy.

The next Fellowship Housing Graduation is coming up on Friday, November 9th. At each graduation, moms ending their two years in the program have a chance to share about their journey. Below is a story from a recent graduate. Register here to attend the November 9th graduation to hear from graduating moms in person.

Jada’s Story

“For me, two words can perfectly describe my experience with Fellowship Housing over the last two years:  Constant Transformation.

Just 2 years before entering the program, I experienced a trifecta of losses.  I found myself completely shocked and betrayed to find out my then husband had severe gambling and prescription drug addictions, which he hid extremely well.  This forced us to file bankruptcy, which then led to foreclosure, then ultimately divorce.  After my separation and divorce of almost 20 years of marriage, I felt so incredibly lost. I felt like the rug was ripped out from underneath my almost perfect life at the time.  I was previously a stay at home Mom, and forced to go back to work after being out of the workforce for the last 8 years.  Months before I was accepted into the program, I was staying with ex-husband’s family, and that was quickly becoming a very stressful and high anxiety environment for me and my 2 young girls.  Two separate people reached out to me around the same time and told me about Fellowship Housing.  I applied in March, and was gratefully accepted in June.

I heard from other moms I have met in the program, that these last two years really can be described like being a caterpillar and going into a cocoon.  The program puts you in this secure, very supportive, accountable environment, so that you can “grow and change” in that “cocoon.”  While in this cocoon you are able to building your savings, getting your finances under control, and try to figure out the next season of your life.  And after the 2 year program, you undergo intense transformation.  The mom gets out of the “cocoon” a butterfly and a forever changed person and you just soar!

Through this time I have developed so much inner strength and confidence, proving to myself that I can make this work.  Being a successful single mom out in the world, all the while, showing my girls through this experience that you are not always stuck in a challenging, horrible season of life.  Fellowship Housing has shown me that with a lot of hard work you can get to the other side, and thrive!

Through this experience, my girls have also grown in so many ways.  One way being that they have learned many new life skills, especially how to deal with adversity, and grow from it.  Also, they have learned through the strict budget about “delayed gratification”.  They are genuinely grateful and enjoy even the small things in life.  My girls and I also have become extremely closer through this time in the program.

I came into this program debt free, and I am happy to say that I am also leaving the program completely debt free.  I had no savings, and 2 years later, I have a savings of over $22,000.  Before the program, I had no career path. During the 2 years, I worked in retail and a couple of temp jobs, one which did offer me permanent employment in a career I absolutely love now. I feel like now I have a solid career path that I truly enjoy and look forward to continue to grow and advance in.

Also while in the program, I continued to build up my support system/community through other Fellowship Housing Moms, friends at church and through the girls’ school.

I have also experienced many blessings though the program with the help of Food for Friends, the CARS Ministry, Care Center, Employment classes and gifts at Christmas through Fellowship.

I am truly grateful for each of the people in my life who have walked this journey with me from the beginning, those who I am fortunate enough to have met along this path.  The lessons I have learned from each of you is immeasurable.

There are so many things I could say about the past 2 years, but I truly have a heart full of gratitude, thankfulness and love that is indescribable.”

Courtney Burton