Tricia stopped by recently to visit with her friends who reside at our Watkins Mill women’s transitional shelter, which assists women with chronic mental illness. She came by to socialize and offer words of encouragement, feeling positive now that she is living on her own in a shared townhouse. She has come a long way since she was a Watkins Mill resident.

Becoming homeless, going through a divorce, and being diagnosed with cancer are three traumatic life events Tricia never thought she would experience, especially at the same time. She moved into our Watkins Mill shelter after living in a shelter for women fleeing abusive relationships.

When she arrived, Tricia was very withdrawn and kept to herself. But after working with our trained staff, over several months she began to actively engage in therapy and attend a Post Traumatic Stress Disorder support group. She struggled with managing her anger, but with support from her therapist and case manager, over time she learned how to cope more positively with stressful situations.

She recently received great health news: her cancer is non-life threatening and she will not have to endure chemotherapy treatments. With the strides she has made with Interfaith Works’ support, Tricia says she is ready to return to work. After enduring the challenges of so many traumas, she told us she is ready to become “a normal person” again.