When Sabrina and her brothers and sisters were growing up, “food insecurity” was not a term that was used to describe hunger. But they lived it. Raised by their grandmother, Sabrina and her seven siblings bounced around from motel to motel. Though their grandma worked all day doing her best to provide for them, they often went to bed hungry.
“We lived off ramen noodles, rice and beans, and homemade tortillas,” Sabrina remembers. During the school year, the situation got a little better because at least they could eat school lunches. But no one knew just how hungry they were. “We were raised not to say anything,” Sabrina says. “The social worker would come and talk to us, but we didn’t tell them — nobody at school knew we were going hungry.”
Sabrina soon had a family of her own, but her relationship with her husband didn’t work out. They split up and Sabrina took their children to live with her sister, where they soon found themselves scrambling for food once again, caught in the same cycle. But Sabrina decided things would be different for her and her children. She wanted her children to have peace and security, knowing that they would have food and shelter and safety. She wanted to break the cycle of poverty and hunger, and work towards a better future for herself and her family. This led her to Orange County Rescue Mission.
At the Orange County Rescue Mission, Sabrina was finally able to take the steps needed to stabilize her family and become self-sufficient. “It feels amazing to know I don’t have to cry about how my kids are going to get food,” Sabrina says. “I don’t have to worry about not having anything to eat. I feel so blessed to be here. We’re going to be okay.” Today, Sabrina’s future looks bright. She’s holding down a steady job, providing for her kids, and best of all, Sabrina has found the confidence within herself to be the person God created her to be. “Today, I love myself the way God loves me. I did a lot of searching in my heart, and now I know my worth, my value.”
You can help more families like Sabrina’s have a memorable holiday with your gift. Your gifts help people have hope for better days ahead, showing them they have what it takes to start a new life.