Jennifer’s Family

From Jennifer:

“Our December started out like any other. We had a family baking day for Christmas on Sunday. By Tuesday our youngest, was admitted to a behavioral health center for Major Depression. The facility was over an hour and half away. We’re very protective parents, so this was hard for us. On Wednesday I woke up with pain on my left side and assumed it was a kidney stone. I had been seen in the past for this pain, but they never found anything in testing and assumed it was a kidney stone that I just passed. But by Thursday morning I had a high fever, chills, body aches and pain so unbearable that it hurt to move any part of my body. So, off to the Emergency Room we went. After some more testing and blood work, I was diagnosed with Diverticulitis, but with a perforation that was leaking into my abdomen. I was admitted and started on a course of heavy antibiotics. I was very fortunate that we caught it when we did, because otherwise the antibiotics wouldn’t have worked as they did and I would have had to have surgery.

Unfortunately, we didn’t have health insurance at this time, our jobs didn’t offer it. I was released from the hospital a few days later with restrictions and more future testing. I was able to return to work a week later. The following week I was back at the hospital, but for a mammogram. There was a small lump found in November. Again, I was very fortunate. Everything came back normal. Again, unfortunately we still had no health insurance.

Then, two days before Christmas my husband and I were on our way to work, when we were hit by a drunk driver. Our SUV was destroyed, and was told it would take three weeks to repair. It ended up being two months before we had it back again and are still currently struggling to get reimbursed from the other driver’s insurance company. Christmas came and went, then on New Year’s Day our youngest was again admitted back to the behavioral health center for her depression. It had been just a series of events for us, and it was pure luck that one of our wine distributors at work brought in a pamphlet for CORE and I saw it.

With so many medical bills and the car accident we were barely staying ahead on our bills. We needed a little wiggle room to breathe, and that is exactly what we got from CORE. It truly has been a blessing.”

Rachel’s Family

Rachel’s four-year old son had a kidney transplant and Rachel had to take time off from her position as a cafeteria worker for several weeks to support him while he recovered.

During this time of immense stress and uncertainty, Rachel turned to CORE for support. Recognizing the significant impact it could have on her family’s well-being, she applied for a financial grant.

The funds provided by CORE made a substantial difference in Rachel’s and her family’s lives. It allowed her to fulfill one of the most essential needs—paying the rent to ensure her family had a stable place to stay. Additionally, the support enabled her to obtain household necessities, easing the burden of everyday life.

Kelly’s Family

Kelly, a server from Virginia, recently made the courageous decision to leave behind a harrowing domestic violence situation, one which left her hospitalized with severe injuries. This transition also forced her to change jobs. However, thanks to the support of CORE, Kelly’s life has taken a positive turn.

Kelly applied for and was awarded a grant from CORE. These funds played a crucial role in helping Kelly and her family during this challenging time. With the financial assistance provided by CORE, Kelly was able to catch up on rent and secure their home, ensuring stability and safety for her and her family.

The impact of CORE’s support on Kelly’s life has been profound. It has brought a tremendous sense of relief, lifting a heavy burden off her shoulders. The financial stability provided by CORE has given Kelly renewed hope for the future, instilling the belief that there are brighter days ahead.

When asked about her experience with CORE, Kelly expressed that her interaction was easy and straightforward. The process of receiving support from CORE was seamless, making a significant difference during a time of great need.

“Because of CORE, I have hope.”

Kara’s Family

Kara’s journey began with a surgery that, unfortunately, resulted in a complication—a cut bladder. This unforeseen circumstance necessitated an additional surgery and, subsequently, more time away from work as a bartender. The financial strain began to take its toll on Kara and her family.

Kara applied to CORE and was awarded a grant. These funds proved to be a lifeline during a time when her income was severely impacted. With the help of CORE, Jane was able to cover her bills and essential expenses during the four months she was out of work. The support from CORE provided a sense of relief, allowing Jane to focus on her recovery and well-being, while also ensuring her family’s stability.

Because of CORE… “I am able to provide my family with support during this difficult time.”

Tiffany’s Family

Tiffany, a server from Georgia, and her family experienced in an unimaginable hardship that left them in a desperate situation. With six children in tow, they found themselves homeless and without any possessions after a devastating fire destroyed their home. Forced to find temporary shelter in hotels, their lives were upended, and ended up living hours away from school and Tiffany’s workplace.

It was during this time of upheaval that Tiffany reached out to CORE for support and received a grant award from CORE. These funds allowed for Tiffany to start rebuilding their lives.

Marco’s Family

Marco is a fine dining chef in Wyoming. His 2-year-old daughter was diagnosed with Retinoblastoma, a rare form of eye cancer, at just 7-months-old. She immediately started chemotherapy. The family lives in Northwest Wyoming and travels ten hours by car to Denver, Colorado every 4-months to have a laser procedure with the objective to shrink the tumor. The doctors say that the tumor will continue to grow but laser treatments every few months help to slow the growth. Early chemotherapy treatment caused permanent hearing loss and she now requires a hearing aid.

His family had trouble to cover their bills due to loss of work and the increased medical expenses. To provide for his family Marco has taken out multiple loans and credit cards. CORE supported the family with a grant that included one month of rent and a CORE VISA gift card to cover utilities and travel expenses for his daughters’ medical treatments.

Chrisel’s Family

Chrisel had been diagnosed with a depression disorder by her doctor that was exacerbated by the recent pandemic. Prior to the pandemic, she was a stay at home mom during the day and a cocktail server/bartender at night. When she was told that she needed to stay home and no longer work as a result of the pandemic it sent her into a deep depression. Chrisel ended up having a mental breakdown and was taken to a hospital where she remained for five days. By the time she was released from the hospital resources such as diapers and baby wipes were scarce and money had become very tight in her household.

Chrisel says that the, “CORE grant has put [her] mind at ease. [She’s] no longer stressing about how [she is] going to make ends meet,  pay bills and provide for [her] babies.”

Marissa’s Family

At age 31, Marissa was diagnosed with Cervical cancer. After an initial surgery to combat the illness she developed an infection that was severely painful left her unable to work for some time. After returning to work a tumor was discovered from a biopsy in the operation, leading to Marissa undergoing a total hysterectomy and lymph node dissection.

Her family has been barely making it month by month, as Marissa had not been able to work her usual hours since early December and has now been out of work for two months in recovery.

Marissa says that the, “CORE grant has not only removed a tremendous amount of stress and worry, but will allow me to catch up on all of my utility and other bills that I have been alternating paying portions of. We are so incredibly thankful and blessed to have this opportunity.”

Kyle’s Family

Kyle was forced out of work for an extended period of time when an auto immune disease came out of remission after a decade. He had spleen removed in hopes to put the disease back in remission. During the initial diagnoses and subsequent surgery/recovery his wife missed roughly two months of work. Unfortunately, he has been hospitalized an additional six times since the surgery. Deductibles and time missed from work had piled up so they connected with CORE. Even in the midst of the COVID crisis CORE was able to come through and not only assist with our mortgage payment while we were both laid off but to help with weeks of utilities and groceries as well

Kyle says that, “CORE took a huge burden off of our shoulders during an unprecedented time of health and financial stress. Allowing us to focus on family and keeping my body trending in a healthy direction.”

Brittany’s Family

Brittany and her husband both work as servers and bartenders and have 3 children under the age of 11. Brittany was recently diagnosed with 2 different strains of breast cancer. Due to the multiple strains and a deep family history of breast cancer, Brittany and her doctors decided it was best to proceed with a double mastectomy.

CORE supported the family during Brittany’s recovery from surgery by paying for rent, utilities, car insurance, and dance lessons for their oldest daughter.

Brittany told the CORE office, “I am just so thankful. It made me feel like the CORE team was giving my family a helping hand not a handout.”

Kiya’s Family

Kiya works at a casual dining establishment as a bartender and is a single mom to her 13 year old daughter Jada. In the fall of 2018, Jada began having a series of seizures that became a mystery for her doctors to solve. During this time, Jada experiences dozens of seizures and multiple hospitalizations. This medical crisis prevented Kiya to work her usual full time hours while caring for her daughter.

CORE supported Jada and her mom by covering many of the family’s expenses including  rent, utilities, and car insurance. CORE also paid to keep Jada in her beloved  gymnastics classes. We are happy to report that the seizures have stopped and  Jada is doing very well.

Kiya recently told us, “We were blessed with the grant CORE provided, removing a huge burden I had been carrying for a long time. It’s more than liberating, and we are forever grateful for this blessing!”

Aaron’s Family

Aaron works as a chef at the Luxo Cafe at Pixar Studios. He and his wife have two children, Adam and Nina. In late 2018, the family was devastated to learn that Adam was sick with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia at only 6 years old.

Adam’s treatment will take approximately 3 years to complete causing financial strain as Adam’s parents juggle their bills while keeping up with the demands of cancer treatment. CORE supported the family by paying for a large unexpected bill.

Cornelius’s Family

The Austin family came into the CORE family in the summer of 2018. Cornelius, a server at Houlihan’s in Fort Worth, Texas, had end stage renal failure and needed a kidney transplant. For almost 3 years, while he waited for a transplant, he attended dialysis 3 times a week for 4 hours.

In June of 2018 there was a complication during a simple procedure on his parathyroid that landed him in a medically induced coma for a full week. It was a scary time for the family and they weren’t sure if he was going to make it. All of this affected the Austin family in so many ways and their lives were flipped upside down while they found ways to make it all work since Cornelius had been the main provider for the family financially.

Although this was incredibly trying on the family, it also bonded them all very deeply. As Shannon told us, “We encourage each other to be open with our feelings and have learned how important we all are. Plus, my kids have gotten to see firsthand the kindness of friends, family, and strangers. We are always trying to find ways to give back all the kindness that has been shown to us and I know these lessons will stay with my kids forever.”

Gaby’s Family

We met the Luna family in 2018. Damien was born with Short Bowel Syndrome and had 16 surgeries by age 2. Damien’s dad also had spinal fusion surgery around the same time as Damian’s 16th surgery. During this time, mother Gaby was the only one working while her husband recovered. She worked at Coppersmith in South Boston.

“CORE was truly a lifesaver in 2018 for our family. We had a very hard year with unexpected surgery for my son and his dad. We had no idea how we would make it through. CORE helped us thru this difficult time. We were able to not stress about our rent and utilities which just that alone was AMAZING! We got gift cards as well and the cutest teddy bear that my son Damian still loves…This is an amazing organization and it was a blessing to be able to get the help we needed. They made the process SO smooth and easy. Thank you CORE!”