Since November 2015, over 200 donors have raised over $70,000 for homeless and low-income women in Washington, DC. People experience homelessness for all sorts of reasons; lack of affordable housing, medical emergencies, job loss, mental health concerns or the death of a loved one. Ms. Courtney asked to share her story with you in her own words.
Courtney grew up in an upper middle class, suburban family, but from an early age she felt different – “I didn’t know exactly what I was.” Born Calvin, she felt most comfortable with female friends and enjoyed being “girly.” Like most kids, she just wanted to be herself — unfortunately her parents would not accept her as a girl.
She struggled to survive living her “double life.” She started using drugs and alcohol to cope, but wasn’t concerned because “partying was what young people did.” Years of partying led to losing her job, her home, and slipping into a deep depression. She felt hopeless and was in and out of the hospital.
Homeless, desperate and alone, she attempted suicide. “I couldn’t see any light.” A judge ordered her to a 30-day psychiatric program; she stayed two months. Finally feeling more stable, she was reluctant to leave. Her case manager recommended N Street Village.
“The minute I walked in, I felt relieved.”
She moved into one of the Village’s transitional housing program where residents focus on gaining stability and access to income and housing resources. She began attending recovery meetings and other activities – the support from the N Street Village community helped her regain her confidence.
“N Street Village was a big change, but the right one. I felt so welcome here – just as I am.”
Today Courtney is maintaining her stability and sobriety, looking for employment as well as rebuilding her relationship with her family. She enjoys giving back to her community and N Street Village family. Courtney dreams of one day going to college to pursue a degree in fashion.