You may not have heard but Highlands United Methodist Church just recently renovated their third floor and converted it into a studio apartment for families experiencing homelessness and Family Promise. This new partnership offers a family the opportunity to stay for up to sixty days for free!!! Now, while this space has already served as home to several of our families, last week it became home to another very special family.
And here is their story:
A little over a month ago Ilda and her husband Martin Ramos along with their children joined the Family Promise community in need of a second chance.
We soon learned that as recently as March everything in their family was picture perfect. Both Martin and Ilda were working; they had a beautiful home in New Mexico and enjoyed their comfortable lifestyle that including hiking, biking, & fishing. That is, until both Martin and Ilda lost their jobs within one month of each other, leaving nothing left in the bank accounts to pay their bills.
“It seemed as if we blinked and found ourselves struggling to stay above water…”
With nowhere to turn Martin pursued a job opportunity in Denver chasing the hope of a second chance.
After arriving in Denver, Martin and Ilda were forced to live off of their savings as they waited for Martins background check to be cleared at his new job. This process of waiting took over three weeks and they quickly spent all they had left.
“I knew we couldn’t keep making it work on our own…so we called Family Promise of Greater Denver and we finally caught our break!” – Ilda
After several weeks of saving and getting their financials in a better place, we were able to move the Ramos family into the Highlands UMC apartment just last week.
According to Ilda her favorite part of the new space is that she can have a some time for her and Martin to relax.
“Prior to moving in at Highlands UMC, we were always sharing a space with our boys causing us to never have a chance to just sit and talk…now we get plenty of time after we put the boys to sleep for the night. Its like we can be NORMAL again. I wish I could thank the leadership of Highlands UMC and Family Promise for all they have done.”
When I asked Ilda what she meant by normal she mentioned that now they can clean dishes, cook meals, watch TV, and be together as a family (You know all the things I often take for granted).
As Ilda and Martin look towards the future, their new goal is to save up their income and be able to move into their very own space after their 60 days are up at the church.
So maybe as we all prepare to BBQ and celebrate the 4th of July…maybe we can be careful to not take for granted the “NORMAL” everyday blessings we get to enjoy.