Stephanie and Diamond: A Place to Call Home
“Building Futures does what the name implies: it provides the foundation for a better life.” Stephanie Pendarvis speaks with a leader’s assurance. When her husband passed away, it was a different story. His mother ordered Stephanie and her granddaughter, Diamond, to pack their belongings and get out. The two were alone with no place to call home. That’s when Stephanie called Building Futures’ hotline.
The two found a temporary home at the San Leandro Shelter—Building Futures’ very first site. Grateful for a place to “breathe and pray,” Stephanie assured Diamond they were on an adventure.
At the San Leandro Shelter, Stephanie had the time and support to address a long-neglected medical issue. “When someone is homeless, their daily priority is getting food and finding a place to rest. There is no time to make a better life,” she says. “The San Leandro Shelter is uplifting. The residents have food and a bed. They also get the tools they need for housing, identification, and social services—all of that.”
Working with a volunteer tutor at the shelter, Diamond raised her math grade from a C to a B. Stephanie got a job as a parent educator and noon supervisor at Diamond’s school. Today with the help of Building Futures’ Housing Program, Stephanie and Diamond have an apartment to call home. “That’s what Building Futures helped us achieve,” Stephanie says. “We are truly grateful.”
This article first appeared in our Special 30th Anniversary Newsletter.