MATS Column

Woman’s dreams get back on track

  • perkins, nancy

    perkins, nancy

  • perkins, nancy

“I can’t give up on my dreams,” a resident at the Monadnock Area Transition Shelter announced with determination when we spoke with her recently. “Now that I have shelter for myself and my child, I feel that I am moving in the right direction.”

When she could no longer stay with a family member, this enterprising young mother went online and found MATS.

A few years ago, our guest realized that her dream was to be a nurse. “I love helping people.” Again she turned to the Internet, and learned of a program that would help her reach her goal — the Health Professional Opportunity Program. Through it, she has obtained a scholarship that will pay for her schooling as well as her youngster’s day care. The child’s father has also assumed some parenting responsibility and is giving her financial support.

Still, our guest knows that achieving her goals won’t be easy, but she is committed to providing a brighter future for her child. She will earn her LNA this summer while also retaking some science courses even though she did well in them years ago. In the fall, she will work part-time and begin her Associates Degree in nursing. Following that, she will continue towards her full R.N. degree. Her long-term goal is to own her own home someday.

Clearly, this young woman is extremely motivated, and she is also very appreciative to be at MATS. She told us that our case manager has been a great help to her, assisting her with thinking and organizing her thoughts about her future and being “more like a good friend”.

Originally from New Hampshire, our guest has lived in other states when her family relocated during her youth. Having attended a fine arts high school, and further studied the arts at a community college, she plays flute as well as likes to sketch. And at her church, she volunteers.

We cannot say enough about this delightful and very wise young mother, and know that she will do well as she pursues her dreams. Her cheerful personality and self-confidence will ensure that she is a wonderful nurse. Certainly her beautiful smile will make everyone in her nursing care, or anyone she meets along the way, feel much better. We wish her a happy and fulfilling future.

NOTE: Last month at MATS, we received over 20 calls for shelter which is unusual for the month of April. Calls came from families, single men, and single moms with children. Calls also came from other organizations: Concord Human Services; the towns of Jaffrey, Peterborough and Gilmanton; a DCYF worker; The River Center; Pheasant Wood Nursing Home; Homeless Out Reach workers; and the ConVal School District Social Worker. The need continues.

WISH LIST: a reliable car; for the MATS yard, could use an adult-sized picnic table, a child’s a plastic slide, sandbox with cover; a sewing machine for one of the guests.

Nancy Perkins of Peterborough and Hope Pettegrew of Hancock are former board members but remain volunteers for MATS. MATS is a member of The River Center on Concord Street. We are a transitional shelter, not an emergency shelter.

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