Navigating Through Grief

Navigating Through Grief

Julie was homeless for much of her life. She frequently moved from one place to another with her mother. Julie told us that she had never met her father and her mother struggled with an opioid addiction. Her mother’s sister took them in and placed them in a hotel. At only 14 years old, Julie was in the hotel room alone when she received a phone call letting her know that her mother had been hit by a car under suspicious circumstances. She had been pronounced dead on the scene of the accident.

Her aunt tried to care for her, but they were unable to maintain that arrangement due to mental health issues and the trauma of processing through their grief in different ways. A different aunt agreed stepped up to help care for Julie. Unfortunately, when it came time for the Guardianship Hearing, her aunt contracted COVID-19 and needed to quarantine. The court took a two-week recess to give her time to recover.

The family law attorney referred Julie to Listening Ear’s Runaway & Homeless Youth Program. We were able to place her in a home for this two-week period. Our case manager worked with Julie to set up medical appointments, counseling, and got her registered in school, so she wouldn’t lose credits. She was able to receive the extra support she needed in the short time she was with us. Julie told us her time in Listening Ear’s program and the support of her host family helped her to learn that there are people out there who care. She created such a bond with her host family and has plans to continue contact with them. She was also able to reconnect with her aunt, so they can begin to repair their relationship.

Are you interested in providing a temporary, safe, and stable home for a teenager? Please let us know. There is a real need for host homes in Isabella and Clare Counties. To find out more information about our program and how you can get involved, please contact us, by email or by phone at (989)772-2918.

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