Monday, June 21, 2010

Good-bye Maggie [Dan Hunt, UHW staff]

Maggie has been a north Minneapolis resident for many years. She moved into Urban Homeworks housing as part of a program that assists people on the challenging road of chemical dependency and mental illness. Together with two roommates, these three dedicated women received support to stay sober and experience a greater level of self sufficiency. Urban Homeworks’ housing is the last step in the program before they can apply for their own housing.

One day, I saw Maggie sitting behind one of our other buildings, up the street from her apartment. Surprisingly, she had been friends with one of our other tenants for 15 years, and they regularly got together to play cards. These friends supported Maggie, encouraging her sobriety and giving her a place to fit in as a friend—not as part of a program.
A few months ago, Maggie asked me about getting her own apartment after she had recovered from knee surgery. She felt like she was ready to get her own place and even brought me a sweet potato pie to “sweeten the deal.” I began to make arrangements for her to get into her own place. She was ecstatic! After so many years of bouncing around from one program to the next, she was making plans to be on her own. That evening, she went to play cards with her friends and told them all about her bright future.

They all celebrated with her. That same night, Maggie fell asleep on her couch and tragically did not wake up. Her heart had stopped. Maggie was kind, quick to smile and make others laugh. She had an infectious joy about her. Others who were with her before she died talked about how much it meant to her to be given a chance—to have a place to call her own. While Maggie’s journey in this life ended suddenly, the support from our 100 Gives 100 Campaign provided an opportunity for her that brought great joy. 100 Gives 100—it’s simple. 100 people each giving $100 a month will make ALL of Urban Homeworks rental homes available to families making as little as $10.00 per hour without the need of a government subsidy. 100 Gives 100 is opening the door a little wider so more people like Maggie have affordable and dignified homes.
[There are currently 67 donors who have committed more than $80,000 so far in 2010, allowing UHW to offer a growing number of dignified housing opportunities]

1 comment:

Ariah said...

Thanks for sharing that beautiful story.