Charlotte Family Housing


A Family’s Fresh Start

Coretta, a hard-working mom with two boys, had been living with her sister until her sister’s boyfriend moved in. It was then that she realized she needed to find a place of her own. With a past eviction, finding a place of her own for her family was much harder than she imagined.

Coretta was referred to CFH and moved into Hawthorne Place on October 22. Moving into shelter is not easy – losing privacy and personal space. Though, if you ask Coretta about her time at Hawthorne Place, she would tell you that she loved it and learned so much that she wouldn’t trade it for anything, “I can do this. It’s not like a shelter. This will work.”

After entering Hawthorne Place, she began saving the required funds to begin the housing search. Once she saved enough, she was connected with one of our housing coordinators and the journey of finding a home began. Her current budget was not going to permit her to move into permanent housing. Wanting to provide a safe and stable home life for her sons, Coretta contacted their father and asked for child support. With this extra financial support, she was able to save enough to begin her housing search.

She found a place that was being offered by a first-time landlord, which fell through. She found another property, but they denied her rental application. By this point, she was nearing six months at Hawthorne Place; Coretta was getting frustrated.

Soon, the housing coordinator called with another option. Coretta was hesitant at first and was even talking herself out of the property on the way there because of the distance from work. Fast forward a few months, and she can’t imagine leaving the area now.

When Coretta arrived, the landlord greeted her and extended his hand with a big smile. He invited her in and encouraged her to walk around and get a feel for the house. As she walked around, she thought, “Oh God, I love this place! This is awesome – this is it!”

Once Coretta’s family moved into their new home, “It felt like home immediately. Going to our own space made a big difference to us.” The first night they didn’t go to sleep until 3 a.m., “We didn’t have beds yet; we borrowed air mattresses. We slept together on the living room floor.”

During the first few weeks in their new home, chore lists and house rules were created. No friends were invited over as they were enjoying their time together in their new home. Coretta believes that they appreciate this house so much because of where they came from. At Hawthorne Place, her sons argued with each other a lot. Now, even though they are sharing a room, they no longer fight.

Coretta knows in her heart that this was the best choice for her family. She offers this advice for all those struggling to make ends meet, “You’ve got to stay focused and do what you need to do. You can’t wait for someone to do it for you. You’ll end up exactly where you started.”

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