Friday, June 22, 2012

Dee's Voice

The Representative Payee program at the Stewpot helps those who are not able to manage their Social Security funds.  We assist with finding housing, making sure all bills are paid on time, and the client’s basic needs are met.  Prior to today we had 43 clients in our Payee program.  Today I am glad to say we now have 42.
Dee came into my office 3 months ago confused, anxious, and scared.  When she would speak her words were not clear.  This time, Dee has been homeless a minimum of 6 months.  Dee has faced many obstacles in her life, such as schizophrenia, and homelessness had become a way of life for her.  Dee received Social Security but was unable to receive any funds without a dependable Representative Payee.  She was referred to our Payee program, where our beautiful relationship began.
After several weeks of meeting we developed a trust with one another and Dee’s speech had become easier to understand.  The more our relationship grew, the easier it became to communicate.  The more we met the more I was able to communicate her self-worth that started with shaking hands, to hugging goodbye. 
After 2 months in our program it was apparent that Dee was forgetful and seemed to be unable to clean herself.  I was excited to hear that she was open to the idea of being paired up with a care center that would then bathe, feed, and house her.  She was interviewed in my office, and shortly thereafter I was informed that she did not qualify for their level of care.  I was discouraged.
Some will always be homeless.  I didn’t want that for Dee, but I had to try to understand.
Two weeks later Dee enters my office.  Something was different. Her eyes were filled with new kind of sadness.  Her eyes pierced my heart deep.  We talked about hygiene and housing.  It was then revealed that she did not shower, because she feared all her clothes would be stolen while she was in the shower, a very tough reality in her world.  Dee was ready, ready to move on and move off the streets, she was desperate. She pleaded, begged. 
That day I was able to pair her with a group home that is above and beyond honorable.  Dee was taken to the house to see if she would be interested in living there.  When Dee arrived back in my office her words were clear and her eyes sparkled when she came back to tell me that she “loves it!” 
After living in her new home for 3 weeks now she continues to speak clear and smile more than I have ever seen.  Her hair is dyed, her clothes are clean, and her smile is constant.  We laugh together now, and when we embrace it is something of meaning and depth.  She is now singing Praises to the Lord at Church in front of her new church family.
She went from having no voice, to singing praising to our her King.
-Sonnie Kinsey

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