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Making a Difference in Randolph County
Program manager Chloe Butler and case manager Courtney Weathers of the RightStep program are making a difference in Randolph County. Here are some recent stories about kids whose lives are being changed.
A KID IN NEED OF LOVE: A week before Christmas, one of the program’s clients was taken out of his mother’s home due to safety concerns, and placed with a great-aunt. This was an incredibly painful experience for him. He talked about how much he dreaded Christmas coming- knowing it would be his first away from the only home he’s ever known. He also mentioned the fact that he probably wouldn’t receive many (if any) gifts. Bridge staff reached out to members of the community to see if anyone might be interested in sponsoring a kid in need of love this Christmas. It turned out the community had a LOT of love to show this young man. With the donated funds, we were able to buy him Christams gifts including more than twenty much-needed items of clothing. The gifts were delivered to him on Christmas Eve and he’s still talking about how awesome his Christmas was this year.
WATER FOR CHRISTMAS: That same week the staff met with a new client in their home. During the visit they learned that the water had been turned off because the family was behind on the bill. The client described the things they had to do each day just to do every day tasks like bathing, washing clothes and dishes, and flushing toilets. So the staff decided to try another fundraiser. Keeping the family’s name confidential, they reached out to the community to see if anyone might feel led to help this family. They named the fundraiser “Water for Christmas.” They needed $528 to get it turned back on. Well...they didn’t get $528. The community donated over $2,000 to this family! Even after the staff communicated that the goal had been met, people continued to give. You see, our staff didn’t yet know the entire scope of this family’s financial need. The power was about to be cut off and they were on the verge of being evicted.  The mom said “I didn’t know if we’d even have a house to spend Christmas in.”  The rent, power, and water bills were all caught up, and the boys (ages 6 & 12) had an awesome Christmas! 
COLLEGE DREAM: Two young ladies in the program graduated high school last May. Both were interested in college, but didn’t believe they’d ever make that dream a reality. Well...it took a couple of months and quite a bit of case management services, but as of last week,  both girls are officially in college! These young women have experienced many adversities in their short lives. With family histories that include extensive substance use and sexual abuse, they both wanted to take the steps to get out of the cycle. At the end of last week, one of them texted our program manager and said “You know, I never would’ve been able to do this on my own. I needed you both to push me. And I’m seriously so thankful for this program.” 
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