“All I had was determination. I was a young, single mother with nowhere to call home. I just wanted to be the best mother I could be and to find a home for me and my son, Rey.
When Everything Changed
assistant for an immigration attorney. At our new home, Rey has his own room, which I never had growing up.
My career took off and eventually led me back to where it all began, Mercy Housing, but this time as an employee, not a resident.
I couldn’t afford a home in the city where I grew up, so I’d been bouncing between friends’ places, sleeping on couches, keeping clothes bundled up in plastic bags — not how I wanted to raise my son. ‘Alone’ was the theme. Rey was all I had in the world. I confided in a friend who recommended Mercy Housing. I applied to Decatur Place apartments, was accepted, and moved into the first real home that Rey and I had ever had. The first day I remember just staring at my clothes hanging in my closet — I didn’t have to dig them out of a bag to put them on anymore. At that moment, I knew I was home.
Once I moved into Decatur Place, everything changed. Decatur Place offered many Resident Services, opportunities for Rey and me to stabilize our lives through education, childcare, and food assistance. I went back to school to earn my GED while Rey had fun at the onsite, early childhood education center. I used every Resident Service available. What I gained from Decatur Place helped me land a job as a legal
Now, I’m a Mercy Housing property management employee at Decatur Place. Support is vital, and I try to create that same supportive atmosphere at work. Having overcome many challenges similar to what current residents at Decatur Place are going through gives me irreplaceable experience to help them. I know the hardest part for many residents is just asking for help. Reminding them, ‘you can get your own place too’ opens their eyes to the possibilities. No one should have to struggle for basic needs as I did before I found Mercy Housing.”
— Gloria Rodriguez