A Desperate Dad and a Last-Minute Rescue
We met Amadu and his family when they came to Cope Family Center seeking help after the devastating Napa Complex Fires. Amadu, a single dad, was at work when the evacuation advisory for his neighborhood was issued on October 11. Despite the dire situation, his employer wouldn’t permit him to leave to get his three children. Due to past trauma, the stress triggered Amadu’s PTSD which resulted in his employer putting him on unpaid leave. Though he had applied for state disability benefits, he hadn’t yet received payments by the time he came to Cope. Desperate for assistance paying his rent so he could keep a roof over his family’s head, Amadu applied for an Emergency Financial Assistance grant, a disaster relief fund distributed by Cope and funded by the Napa Valley Community Foundation.
During his verification appointment, Amadu explained his situation to his case manager, Colleen, and provided the necessary documentation. Once his application was approved, he was in tears as he expressed his relief. Knowing his rent would be paid, Amadu felt a glimmer of hope. “My daughter is doing so well in school,” he explained. “I am so thankful we won’t have to move. She can stay in her school where she is thriving.”
Colleen referred him to our Family Resource Center for further assistance. We connected him to the Napa Food Bank; distributed clothing vouchers for Church Women United; gave him diapers and baby wipes; and handed him gift cards to help him make ends meet while he waited for his disability payments to start. Additionally, Amadu was able to meet with a therapist onsite to help manage mental health struggles caused by the fires. He was filled with gratitude for all the support and thanked our staff as he left, saying “Cope has changed my life. Thank you for giving my family hope.”
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