Life didn’t spare Vicki from hardship and homelessness, even though she’s held good jobs, been to college, and stayed free of the addiction trap. Today, her life has been transformed.
The shattering blow for Vicki was the death of her fiance in the summer of 2012. Suddenly, the sensitive, soft-spoken 54-year-old found herself in a bewildering spiral. The couple had planned to let Vicki finish her college degree while her fiance supported them. But after his death, Vicki was forced to drop out of her adult education classes and abandon plans for a business degree.
Worse was to come: paralyzed by grief, Vicki’s independent life slipped from her grasp. Temporary jobs didn’t last. Soon she had no way to pay the rent. From there, it was a short, rough path to homelessness.
Then a new road opened up which led Vicki to the Julia Greeley Home in the Denver metro area. Our pilot program launched in 2013 in a cozy, picturesque farm-style home in the heart of Arvada, and accommodated four women. (Since then, in August 2015, Julia's moved to our larger shared community nearby, while Vicki's life has taken a different turn.)
It was when Vicki joined Julia’s in our pilot home in early 2014 that she began to recover her confidence and self sufficiency - and a sense of family.
“It’s a really nice home to come home to,” Vicki said during an interview that year.. “I appreciate the chance to start over again and get back into full swing.”
In Julia’s serene, well stocked kitchen, Vicki was able to take her turn contributing some of her favorite dishes, such as chicken casseroles, spaghetti and meatloaf. She slept in safety, in a sweetly furnished second floor bedroom. Each day she joined the other women -- as they gathered for a time of spiritual and personal reflection.
While Vicki nourished her heart and soul, she was also able to bring her work life back to life, too. Thanks to Julia’s partnership with Bayaud Enterprises, Vicki was able to meet every week with Bayaud job developer Lynda Drake, who helped Vicki narrow her search to fields which fit her skills, which includes data entry, accounting, billing, customer service, and 12 years’ experience working as an office assistant in an orthopedic surgeon’s office.
Today, it's several years later, and Vicki's life has been transformed. For the past year of 2015 and now into 2016, Vicki holds a position as a house manager at a home which provides social services. She has turned her past experiences into a victory, and now helps to inspire other women to become independent and self sufficient. The dark years are over. Once nourished by the inspiring serenity of Julia’s, and motivated by Lynda Drake’s expertise, Vicki was able to work her way to a good life -- where time is once again on her side.
“Being able to live at Julia’s, and connect with people like Lynda, (was) wonderful,” she reflected during the 2014 interview. “To be with people who care what happens to you and to be able to have a job counselor who can really help, I appreciate it so much!”