Stories

Apr 09

Terri

Meet Terri Thirty years ago, Terri Ruffin made the decision to join the United States Army. Her superiors quickly recognized her talents and it wasn’t long before she was selected to receive specialized training in Air Traffic Control School. “I became the first African-American female Air Traffic Control instructor in the U.S. Army,” Terri said. It’s a distinction

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104-year-old resident Rafelita sits with with her family in her Mercy Housing home.
Apr 09

Rafelita

At 104 years old, Rafelita is one of Mercy Housing’s eldest residents. For 14 years, she’s lived at Mercy Housing’s Clare of Assisi apartments. Raised in the San Luis Valley, her joyful youth was spent on a ranch. She attributes her long life to growing up on a ranch, remembering: “fresh food, time with friends and nine siblings — can’t beat that. I could run wild in fresh air, with the people I care about, that’s what life is about.”

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LaVonya
Apr 09

LaVonya

LaVonya had an 8-year-old son, volunteered at church, and was a naval reservist. She graduated from Columbia College and promptly found a job. In less than a year, she was laid off. That same year her mother passed away leaving LaVonya to look after her 12-year-old brother. Suddenly, she had two growing boys to raise and was out of a job. She needed a home for the three of them, but student debt prevented her from getting a loan to buy a home while trying to find a new job, all at once.

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edna-lawson
Mar 14

Edna's Story

17 years-old and on her own, Edna was battling homelessness and addiction on the streets of Chicago. Filled with hope and a desire for a better life, she found her way to Mercy Housing and moved into an apartment in the Schiff Residences…

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Virginia Watt - Mercy Loan Fund

Virginia Watt never thought that she would realize the dream of homeownership. A native Chicagoan, Virginia has been working as a forklift operator with Graham Packaging for 33 years…

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The Voss Family

Mercy Housing Lakefront opened the Wentworth Commons Apartments in June 2005 and soon became home to 24 single adults and 27 families, including 85 children who were formerly homeless or at great risk of becoming homeless…

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Leonard a senior resident and veteran

World War II veteran Leonard found himself struggling with financial and health challenges while living alone in a trailer at the age of 85. When his wife died after 62 years of marriage, Leonard found himself depressed and lonely. He wanted to move but lacked the resources…

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Bridgette Smiling

By the time Bridgette Sims connected with Mercy Housing, she had fought through recovery from addiction and lived in homeless shelters. Her strength and tenacity led to a job and the ability to move her family into a home of their own…

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People of Mercy
Oct 25

Celya

“I understand what the residents are going through when they come to us, and I always tell them that every day is a second chance.”

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People of Mercy
Oct 25

Darrow

“I’m not letting the titles of the illness slow me down. People draw near to light more than they do to darkness. There’s a Peanuts character named Pig-Pen who has a cloud following him around. I want to be more like Charlie Brown or Snoopy, getting involved in things, than being like the character with the cloud over his head.”

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