Yolanda's Story: A Fresh Start

My life is completely different now

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What we learn as children often sets the stage for the rest of our lives. This was the case with Yolanda, who grew up watching her parents and other family members abuse drugs and alcohol. She, in turn, picked up these addictions. Yolanda was never shown examples of healthy families, so she never knew that there is another way to live.

After 25 years of on-again, off-again drug abuse, prostitution and homelessness, Yolanda was tired of existing. Luckily, someone was there to help her see that she could change her life. With a friend’s help, Yolanda entered a treatment program where she achieved sobriety—something she fights to maintain each day.

Yolanda moved from the center into a shelter, where she lived for 18 months while waiting for more permanent housing. Finally, she got the call that an apartment was available through the help of a United Way partner agency. A few weeks later, Yolanda moved into her first real home in more than 20 years.

Now, Yolanda lives a peaceful life full of opportunities. She recently started attending classes to become a medical assistant. "My life is completely different now," Yolanda shared. "I want to live today."

United Way fights for the dignity and strength of people like Yolanda. Your work and donations support the fight. Thank you.

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