For Courtney and her family, life was a struggle just to make ends meet.
Courtney, her husband and four children were living on the bare minimum, with her husband’s wage sometimes not enough to cover the bills that were piling up.
Then a change in circumstances turned their family upside-down and put them closer to danger.
First her husband was made redundant, placing further stress on their already stressed finances. Courtney says that this had an effect on everything from paying bills to having food on the table.
‘When my husband was made redundant, we were struggling to get food for all our family and things were really, really hard.’
Courtney especially worried about how their poverty was affecting the children.
‘You always want to give your kids the best of everything, but when you feel like you’re not giving them what you need and what they want, you feel like you’re failing as a parent.’
Then a second blow struck the family, when Courtney received a cancer diagnosis. This devastated the family and caused Courtney to spend a lot of time in hospital—and away from the family—undergoing both treatment and operations.
Courtney says that this impacted on the family on several different levels.
‘We really struggled, for our family to deal with the cancer in our family, it was hard because was husband was dealing with so much—looking after the kids, trying to find work and having me in hospital all the time.’
Thankfully, The Salvation Army was there to help when Courtney and her family were at their most vulnerable. They stepped in to provide a range of social work and support, including food parcels, budgeting advice and advocacy and other assistance. They also provided extensive counselling to Courtney and her husband, helping to heal the trauma their marriage had gone through during these challenges and working on healing their strong family bond.
Today, Courtney and her family are in a much better place. Courtney wonders what their life would’ve been like if they hadn’t received support from The Salvation Army during that time.
‘If they didn’t help us, then I won’t know where we’d be because that was our lowest point and if we didn’t have somebody to pick us back up… I don’t know what we would’ve done without that boost.’
This Christmas, more than 17,000 families like Courtney's will turn to The Salvation Army for support. With your help, we can give them the support they desperately need.
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