In this season of giving I've just become aware of a sad situation in the lives of one of my loyal readers. Liz is a Christian mom and widow. Her daughter, Katy, is now 16. They live in the general area of San Jose, California. They've been teetering on the brink of poverty for some time now, and have just fallen over the edge into homelessness. They are living in their car.
Last night I received an email from Liz, telling me that Katy is blogging about their experience. Katy loves art, and the drawings on her blog are her own. Please visit her blog here and start from the beginning. (There aren't too many posts yet; you can quickly catch up.) This is an unfortunate example of how the working class can fall into homelessness.
I encourage you to leave a comment on Katy's blog. They would be so encouraged by that. I've emailed Liz regarding how she might receive funds and have yet to hear back from her. I'll update this post when I do. If you'd like to send some money to this struggling mom and daughter, please check back here for updates. Or leave a comment on Katy's blog, asking her to contact you with info.
For a number of years now I have sent Liz a free book every time one of mine releases. She has always graciously written back with thanks and much praise for the story. She's been a real encouragement to me. I'm hoping to now help her through my online network of blogging, Facebook and Twitter. I'd appreciate any way you can help spread the word through your own networking.
Update 9:00 a.m.: Katy has put a P.O. Box number on her blog, where money can be sent. I have also looked into homeless shelters/programs in their area and made some calls. So far there are no openings, but we're still working on it. The problem is that many offices will start closing for New years. We will be trying to get Liz and Katy out of their car and into beds right away, while they gather some funds and work with agencies who can help get them on their feet.
Update 11 a.m.: People are getting involved, helping spread the word about Katy's blog. A homeless girl artist blogging her experience is quite a story from the human interest point of view--and people are following the links to view Katy's blog. If you are on Twitter, Facebook, Shoutlife, have your own blog--please post about Katy's blog and send people there. Her blog counter has gone from very low numbers to 465 overnight, and those numbers are climbing. Help us get the word out! And if you can spare a little money for these two, please send a check to their P.O. box (address on Katy's blog.)
Update 11:20 a.m.: As people are getting involved to help Liz and Katy, it's becoming clear they need an easier way to send money. Liz doesn't have a Paypal account. If you'd like to send funds to Liz and Katy, please send them to my account, and I'll make sure every cent goes to them. Please put in the subject line: For Liz and Katy. My account is under my email address: brandilyn (@) brandilyncollins (dot) com