Ashley's Story

Ashley's Story Graphic

Ashley* is a single mother of two children under four years of age. When staff began working with her family, she was living with the father of her children in a run-down home that left her isolated because of location, lack of transportation, and lack of social supports. She was left alone in this home for days on end while the father of her children worked out of town. Due to safety concerns with her son, who was special needs, there was an assessment by the Department of Human Services. 

Ashley agreed to a safety plan, and the agency that was providing safety services connected her with the Parent Education programming through Family and Children's Council. She participated weekly for individual sessions and parent education group sessions. Through staff connections with local resources, her son was able to receive assistance for behavioral and developmental challenges in addition to staff providing support for medical visits, accessing transportation, child-proofing the home (resources were also provided), and connections with healthy peer supports. 

Two years later, Ashley has left the father of her children due to the unhealthiness of the relationship and has moved into her own home. She has continued to meet the medical, behavioral and educational needs of her children and both are enrolled in public school. She has acquired her driver's license and has a vehicle that is registered and licensed in her name - quite an accomplishment given that she had substantial fines to pay to reinstate her license. She is employed full-time and recently achieved the status of manager by taking classes and proving her abilities on the job. 

Perhaps most importantly, Ashley is taking care of her own physical and mental health needs, as well as seeking support from healthy individuals. The future truly looks bright for this family and through the connection of parent education services, staff has been able to be a support and advocate for the family on their journey.

Cedar Valley United Way is proud to support programs like Family and Children's Council's Parent Education: Parent Connection and Empowering Parents program that helps people like Ashley.

Together, we fight for the health, education, and financial stability of every person in our community. To live better, we must Live United. Because, United We Can!

*Names in the story have been altered to preserve anonymity.