As Covid was impacting all of us last year, we received a call from a concerned community member living in Corte Madera. While walking her dogs, she noticed a woman on a park bench who looked afraid.
The caller reported she previously had seen the same woman wrapped in a long green coat sitting quietly on the same bench with a few bags. When the caller attempted to find out if the mystery woman was all right, she grimaced and refused to answer.
One morning, this neighbor gave the woman a piece of paper with information about the St. Vincent de Paul Society in Marin.
A few days later, the lady in the green coat appeared at our Housing Help Desk. She told us that she had been caring for and living with her older brother in Corte Madera but became homeless when he died unexpectedly. Overcome by grief and fear, she was alone and had no idea where to go. She told us her name was Delia.
Many times, people like Delia have difficulty finding help. Marin’s natives are often not quite old or sick enough to qualify for benefits, but still not self-sufficient enough to afford a place on their own. You were there for Delia. Your generosity provided a professional case manager who developed a housing plan to help her.
With our help, Delia began feeling less overwhelmed but the fear of Covid and approaching winter added to the urgency of finding her a new place to live. Undeterred, St. Vincent’s found Delia a shared-living arrangement with an older woman in Terra Linda who could not drive and needed help with errands.
Your generosity paid Delia’s small rental deposit and her first month’s rent and provided some basic furnishings for her room. Today, she is working part-time with a home care service agency, earning her own way, and making new friends. Thanks to your support, we regularly check in with Delia while she is getting back on her feet and beginning life anew.
Today, Delia says she will never forget the fear and cold she experienced while living on that bench, or the nice neighbor and people at the St. Vincent de Paul Society who helped her—just out of the kindness of their hearts.