When Judy’s husband Bob lost his job as a civil engineer during the downturn in the economy, all the air was let out of the family’s financial balloon. A one-income family with two teen children, Bob and Judy quickly burned through their savings while he looked in vain for work in his field.
Judy took a clerical job just to have some money coming in, but it was not enough to keep their home. Being homeless was beyond the family’s wildest imagination—just a year earlier, they had felt so secure. They found themselves relying on the goodness of friends, who offered them limited spaces in their own homes.
It became necessary for Bob to live in one place with his son, and Judy to live separately with their daughter, for months at a time. As a mother, Judy says these were
the toughest of times. The family finally got a break when their church found them a place they could rent together.
Still, there was not enough money to cover both rent and food. After more than a year of refusing help, the family finally gave in and visited a local food pantry supplied by the Valley Food Bank. The food they received helped to sustain their hope, keep their family together, and get them through the tough time.
Today, Bob is working again as an engineer, and Judy has found a job she loves as well. Both children are thriving and on their way to success, and things are looking up—a great testament to what is possible when a community cares enough to provide the basics for regular people who are struggling to make life work. This story is repeated thousands of times every day, in different ways, across the valley.