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Stories of Resilience

Toni’s Story

My name is Toni and I’m broke, homeless, and I live in a shelter. I have always known about the Greenhouse, but never thought that I would ever become a resident there. The first time I came to the shelter, it was late September/early October. At the time, I didn’t realize what a blessing it was to be there. The shelter doesn’t ask for anything except that you follow the rules and try to do one chore a day. I didn’t do that. The shelter is there to keep you safe, provide food, and a warm place to sleep at night. I’d never participated in anything.


It was my 30th day in the shelter, my 46th birthday and I was asked to leave. I was not minding my own business and broke another woman’s anonymity. Again, I found myself homeless, broke, and living out of a box. I talked my ex-boyfriend into taking me in for a month and that didn’t turn out so well either. Again, I had to leave.


I called the shelter and asked to come back. This time in the shelter, I took advantage of counseling and told them things I’d never talked about. When I got those horrible secrets out in the open and dealt with them in a healthy, safe environment, I felt a change come over me. I can’t explain it. I started getting involved, doing the things I needed to do to help me get back on my feet again and find a place of my own.


I think I became the person that I was meant to be. I walked with my head held high and learned to follow directions. I have learned so much here. I will never be able to thank the staff for everything they did for me. The shelter has taught me a new way to live. I came in here a broken down, scared little girl, and will be leaving a strong, independent woman.

Jane’s Story

To the Staff at Women’s Services:


I will be exiting the shelter soon and wanted to let you know how grateful my son and I are for all the help you have given us. You are priceless, and the work you do often goes unnoticed. We noticed, and will forever be grateful for your help.


You have been the hand I needed to gain back a safe, healthy lifestyle for my son and me. You have been kind, compassionate, considerate, understanding, knowledgeable, patient, and so much more. You have given me back the strength and confidence I needed.


Our time at the shelter has given us the safe haven we needed to relocate to, in a new town, away from our abuser. Besides giving us a safe home, the staff at Women’s Services has assisted me with searching for housing, employment, and finding public transportation. They have been there any time to listen when I just needed to talk.


I have also attended the group counseling you offer two nights a week. The benefits for me have been immense. I have learned all about the cycle of abuse and how to break it. I’ve learned how to take back control of my life. Most importantly, I’ve learned what I needed to change myself so I will never again become a victim.


Two days ago, a woman in our town was stabbed and killed by her abusive husband. That could have been me or my son if we didn’t have Women’s Services and its wonderful staff to help us when we needed it. Without your help, and the safety of the shelter, we would still be in an unsafe home with our abuser. Thanks to all of you, we are safe and looking to the future.

Maria’s Story

Dear WSI Staff:


I am writing to you to let you know that my stay here was safe for me. God sent me here for a reason. I have been on a long journey all my life, from childhood to now. I have carried bad things that have happened to me during my years of growing. Now I am beginning to heal myself with the help of the staff and God, which I will carry with me for the rest of my life here on earth. I shall serve my God. Donnarae, you are the best. All our talks were great. Thank you and God bless you and your family. Rose, you’re an angel from God. When I am in your presence, I get chills because God is good and through you, I know Him. Jane, you always gave me a warm smile. You’re a great lady. Lori, you have the most amazing personality. Thank you for being there on the nights I could not sleep. I am not too good with names, but remember all the staff members’ faces and you are all great.

Cindy’s Story

Dear Women’s Services,


When I arrived at the shelter, I was scared, lonely, completely mentally unstable, and unsure of what my future held. I was scared that my life was ruined. I was sure I wasn’t strong enough to make it through the night, let alone the rest of my life. The thoughts of my past abuse and the years of conditioning had taken their toll and blinded me to the good things in my everyday existence.


I felt helpless, misguided, and forsaken by God and society. I couldn’t see past my own suffering to function. The shelter gave me a safe place to live and the space to catch my breath. You offered me the goal-oriented structure that I so desperately needed. A way to find little victories to keep me focused on what was expected of me and what needed to be done.


I was shown various tools and ways to start building a secure and strong foundation for my future. Being here has allowed me to gain the strength to begin the healing process. I am becoming stronger and stronger each day. With every little triumph, I am able to take care of myself without hesitation. With the support system I have gained by being here, I am now eager to face each day. I do my best at whatever I do and know I am a survivor, no longer a victim. For the first time, I have hope for my life and hope in my heart.


The shelter has forever changed my world. The true, sincere encouragement I have gotten from you has given me a new lease on life. I know I can only go up from here and there is no looking back. I thank each and every one of you.

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Golfer Information

Individual golfer fees are $125 and cover cart and greens fees, brunch, hole prizes, snacks and beverages on the
course as well as appetizers at the awards ceremony. If you have any questions, please contact Julie at
Women’s Services 814.724.4637.

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