Interfaith is committed to ending family homelessness in North County, one family at a time. See how your support has made a life-changing impact on local families.

Success Stories

All of our family shelter stories have been shared with the consent of our clients. Thank you for taking the time to learn about the real people behind today’s critical issues.

Gary and Eli

Gary, a single father and his son, Eli, were struggling on the streets while living out of their vehicle. Due to Gary’s overnight work schedule with long hours, dropping Eli off at school was not always possible. When Eli did make it to school, he was often tired, having been unable to sleep comfortably in their small vehicle overnight. 

Upon entering Interfaith’s family shelter, our team quickly worked to set up a transportation schedule for Eli to attend school, getting picked up and dropped off through a local program. Our staff then learned that they had family in another state who may be able to help them, although they had not spoken in some time. Interfaith’s behavioral health team helped Gary realize that it’s ok to reach out to family when in need and that it was a decision that could greatly benefit his and Eli’s future. 

Once connected with family again, our team helped repair fractured bonds and Gary and Eli’s family agreed to take them in and support them getting back on their feet. Before their move, our staff helped connect Gary to employment that was set to start once they moved to the new state. They also supported with making sure their vehicle was in working order and that their registration and insurance were current before making the move. Interfaith also provided gas vouchers alongside meals and snacks, ensuring they would get to their destination safely. 

While preparing for their new adventure, Eli found it difficult to leave the new family and relationships he had found at our Family Shelter, especially since his birthday was coming up a week after they were supposed to leave. Eli was heartbroken that he would not be able to celebrate it with everyone at the shelter. To his surprise however, our staff had planned an early birthday party for him which he joyfully celebrated with everyone at the Family Shelter before embarking on his new journey with dad. After their celebration Gary and Eli said they were “nervous but excited” for their new start.

That’s not all though, now at their new residence, our staff continue to check in on them to make sure they are meeting their goals and remain on the path to self-sufficiency. 

It’s difficult to predict when we might need help and support and even more so, from where it will come from. From all of us at Interfaith Community Services, thank you for making our work possible.

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The Mendez Family

John was living on the streets last year, battling addiction with seemingly no way out until he found his way to Interfaith Community services. After a few weeks of finding a consistent food source through our free sack lunch program, he trusted our staff enough to ask for help. Once connected to our Recovery and Wellness center, their journey towards overcoming addiction began. 

After some months in Interfaith’s Addiction and Recovery program he was gainfully employed and informing our staff that, for the first time in a long time, he was excited about his future again. John eventually graduated from the program, and while he was making great progress, he still needed a place to stay with his family while saving up for a deposit on a place of their own. This is when we connected them to the Family Shelter you helped create. 

At the Family Shelter they’ve been able to access resources such as childcare, support from behavioral health teams, employment support, and apply for health benefits for their family. Every day, our team works to adequately prepared them for a life of self-sufficiency once again. Now, we are happy to say this family is nearly exiting Interfaith’s programs and services and they wanted to share their journey with the people who were there for them when it all seemed impossible and hopeless, YOU

You can see their journey firsthand through this impactful video and remember that this is only possible, thanks to the network of support you create through your kindness, generosity, and compassion. Thank you!

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The Soto Family

The Soto family consists of Mom, Dad, and four children ages 18, 14, 2, and 7 months. They were all living in a single room. Dad was working construction full-time but his hours were greatly reduced as a result of this winter’s rains. He was able to find and currently works full-time at a restaurant, while Mom is full-time with Amazon.  

In February 2024, this family, on the brink of eviction, came to Interfaith for help. In the “it takes a village” spirit, their Interfaith case manager worked with another local nonprofit to help the family find, apply, and pay first month’s rent on an apartment.  

Your support of this family also provided: 

  • Gas vouchers to help Mom and Dad get to work and medical appointments
  • Food, hygiene, and baby supplies (diapers, wipes, etc)
  • Move-in assistance including furniture and basic household items
  • Ongoing case management 

The Sotos are now comfortably housed and their Interfaith case manager continues to check in and make sure the entire family is stable and children are thriving. Through the parents’ full-time employment and their case manager’s help to enroll in govermnent programs including like MediCal and CalFresh, the family is once again well on their way to regaining full self-sufficiency. 

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The Pearce Family

Marianna and Troy were experiencing homelessness, living with their two children while expecting a third. Troy was working full-time but when he notified his employer that he planned to enlist in the military, the employer cut his hours drastically.

The family was referred to the Family Shelter and entered the program, where they have been able to save money and receive support to plan for the future. Their oldest daughters love princesses and dressing up to show staff, while Mom bonds with their newborn sister.

Through case management, Troy and Marianna worked diligently to improve their credit scores, which helped them obtain housing. They also registered Becca and Tasha for preschool where they are beginning their education and improving their social skills. Troy and Marianna participated in Family Shelter workshops here to improve their life skills and therapeutic skills. 

While in the Family Shelter, Troy and Marianna received support that included:

  • Rental deposit and first month’s rent
  • Moving costs and supplies
  • Clothing, furniture, and housewares
  • Baby supplies, crib, playpen, toys, games, 
  • Car insurance payments

When Troy entered Basic Training, Marianna and the girls moved into their new apartment. When Marianna is able to work again, she would like to get a job in child development. She is currently getting her GED and taking child development classes. 

Please watch their video to experience their transition from struggling for survival to stability, thanks to the support provided from this campaign.

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