PATHWAY OF HOPE: MEET EARLINE FROM GLEN BURNIE
Earline, a mother of six children, including a son named Monya who was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis, has been a part of Glen Burnie Service Center’s Pathway of Hope program since 8/21/21.
Before entering the program, Earline endured an onslaught of financial, emotional, and job-related hardships with no support. She’s a single mom and the father is not in the picture.
When Monya was first diagnosed with Cystic fibrosis at three months, he spent most of his early years at Mount Washington Hospital. Over the years, Earline managed to work full time while he was in and out of Johns Hopkins hospital for treatments due to continuous bacteria growth.
Once Monya was discharged, and placed in permanent home care, Earline was forced to leave her full time job as a nursing assistant, and live solely on public assistance and social security.
Earline was barely making ends meet, let alone care for all six kids properly. Bills mounted, debt collectors dragged her to court, and even more worries weighed her.
Without a full time job, how was she suppose to pay off these bills?
When she was a nursing assistant, she not only loved her job, but she was pulling in between $25.00 to $35.00 an hour depending on the clients. After leaving her full time job, she took online courses to be a medical biller and coder at home; and she was able to work part-time, at home, as a health aid, earning just $13.00 an hour, for 23 hours per week. The State of Maryland funded this position, but also pulled this position from her as of 10/28/21, because parents can no longer be employed while taking care of their children.
On top of that, Monya went to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, for an evaluation, in hopes of getting a lung transplant. If approved, Monya could live a healthier life. As of current January 2022, he, unfortunately, caught COVID, so he will be monitored for it and will be treated for an infection.
Expenses, bills, and debt keep piling up.
Earline was left to sell whatever she had of value. So she took out a title loan on her car to pay expenses when she first quit her job to take care of her son. Unfortunately, the car was in an accident, but she did get a replacement car. However, the title loan was not paid off by the insurance company. So the creditor, with the title loan, emptied the client’s checking account. Even that was not enough to pay off this creditor.
The Salvation Army of Central Maryland, specifically, Pathway of Hope in Glen Burnie, intervened with a guiding hand.
For starters, Glen Burnie staff helped Earline with a car payment, so she was able to start a payment plan with her title loan. Earlene was able to pay $510.00 of the bill, because The Salvation Army lent a guiding hand. Glen Burnie staff worked with Earline to find other community partners to assist her, and once she put an application in with a foundation that provides financial assistance, support, and hope to children battling life threatening illneses that gave them the best chance of survival, she was approved of $3,900 to pay off her bill.
Earline also received help drafting a letter to another foundation, this one assists families that have expenses due to lung transplants. On October 19, 2021, the education and grants program director contacted her. Once one of two evaluations are complete, and if Monya is approved for the lung transplants, the foundation can determine if they would provide financial assistance between $500-$2500. This assistance would go towards helping the family cover living expenses in Philadelphia, three to six months, after Monya’s transplant.
In addition, Glen Burnie staff provided Child Tax Credit information to help Earline apply. They also recommended she apply for cash assistance until she can go back to work, which she started receiving in January.
While getting her debt paid off, The Salvation Army was able to use COVID funds and Pathway of Hope funds to pay some of her November and December bills. Until Earline goes back to work, she still has to make it with a limited budget. Fortunately, her adult daughter is going to assist her mom with $380.00 a month.
Despite life’s obstacles, Earline hasn’t shied away from her aspirations and dreams. Once she returns home from Philadelphia with her son, she plans to continue her educational job training as a medical bill and decoder.
The Salvation Army provided Earline information on Insight Global, as a possible path moving forward towards employment at home. Insight Global is a national staffing agency that will connect Pathway of Hope Families with great job opportunities and training. Any Pathway of Hope family member, that is ready to work, can be sent to Insight Global: https://insightglobal.com/salvation-army-pathway-of-hope.
Earline can also be connected to an Insight Global Recruiter or sign-up for Pathway to Opportunity Workshop once she completes her classes. Glen Burnie Staff also provided the same information to another client that is working from home.
Pathway of Hope gives more than financial, emotional, and job support to people in need. It gives people, like Earline, who is motivated to provide a better life for her and her kids, a fighting chance.