Member Agency Story
Hope for the Future
When the flood of December 2015 submerged Jefferson County, the “M” family’s home sustained major damage. The mother, father, and two sons evacuated, but they returned to living in the house because they did not have any family or neighbors who could accommodate them. The stress of living in such difficult conditions took a savage toll: Dad, at age 30, dropped dead of a brain aneurysm six months later. Mom could not possibly support the boys with the income from her part-time job in a bakery, and she was too grieved and shocked to push forward with the recovery process. The boys sank into depression, one of whom told a teacher that he wanted a gun for Christmas 2016 so he could “go to heaven and see my father again.” Case managers from Catholic Charities of St. Louis became the family’s lifeline. Besides assessing the damage to the home and securing funds for repairs, the case managers assisted Mom in tending to all the details that had arisen in the aftermath of her husband’s death and also helped her accept that her boys needed professional therapy. Life will never return to “normal” for this family, but now that the boys are in counseling and their home is being repaired, there is hope again for the future.