Second Chance Champions | Amanda H.

Amanda HAmanda had been living in a motel with her newborn baby when she crossed paths with Eckerd Connects. In the process of being kicked out with nowhere else to run, Amanda was at imminent risk of becoming homeless. The last six months, in which she was connected to Eckerd Connects and her family coach, Mr. Howie, have been the biggest blessing she’s ever experienced. With Mr. Howie’s support and advocacy, Amanda overcome insurmountable odds.

“As her case manager,” Roy Howie recounts, “it was important to help Amanda learn how to save and budget. She was working two jobs at the time–at night, she made donuts, and during the day she worked at a drive-through restaurant. She worked tremendously hard to save up money.” Her ambitions didn’t stop there, though. Amanda knew she was capable of an even brighter future. During her time at Eckerd, she decided that she wanted to go back to school and got enrolled in a cosmetology program. She writes, “All I felt we really needed was a chance, and when this door opened, I felt as if so many more things were possible if we continued to strive forward and overcome obstacles we used to think would hold us back from where we could see ourselves being.”

“That was an awesome goal for her to accomplish,” Roy adds. “She has learned to become independent and knowledgeable about seeking resources in the community to accomplish her goals.” This persistence and willingness to learn have allowed both her own and her daughter’s opportunities to multiply. “My daughter has gotten to experience so much more, and I have had access to many more resources… As a first-time mom, there were a lot of things I was unsure of how to apply for or where to go, such as childcare… I’ve been able to provide a much better environment and developmental opportunities for my daughter because now we’re living in an actual community.”

Eckerd Connects continues to help families overcome challenges to pave their way to success, and Amanda’s story shows an incredible victory. “I have deep appreciation and respect for this organization, its donors, and the love they show to so many families that are just trying to stay above water and stay together.”

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