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    Reaching a family hit by Harvey

    Day 275

    Helping Juanita

    The water rose as high as 8 feet around the mobile home where Juanita Gomez lives with her daughters Jasmin and Yesenia and their puppy Bella. Juanita recounted, “our appliances nearly rose to the ceiling.” During the middle of the night of the third day of the rain, Juanita and her daughters had no other choice but to hop in a neighbor’s truck and flee.

    They returned home to a nightmare, but with nowhere else to go they’ve been living there since the flooding. Mold is growing throughout the home and mosquitoes have invaded. Juanita showed us the small room where she and the girls are sleeping – they had lined the walls with a yellow tarp, trying to create some barrier between them and the mold. “Yes, that’s where we are sleeping.” On top of it all, they haven’t had water service since the storm and their electricity had just been turned off because they were unable to pay.

    Juanita needed help to get her family safe. So, that’s what we did on Day 275.

    First thing was first, we needed to get Juanita and her daughters out of their house. We called Catholic Charities who can provide the family with temporary housing in Houston and our partners All Hands to put Juanita’s on the list of homes that need gutting. But in the meantime, Juanita’s power had gone out and spoiled any of the food they had, AND they were out of a ton of essentials.

    So we made a TARGET run. We bought non-perishable food and personal hygiene items such as soap, deodorant, toothbrushes and paste, shampoo and conditioner, lotion, moisturizing towelettes, tampons and sanitary pads and more. We even bought some treats and a dog toy for Bella and a pampering kit with nail polish for Juanita and her daughters.

    Juanita’s eyes lit up when we presented her the items. “This will give me the necessary things to keep on going and fun things to escape reality a little bit.” We hope this temporary relief will help Juanita and her daughters as they await services to rebuild their lives.

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