Summer is busy at Hope Women’s Center. If you visit any of our valley locations this month, you’ll see interns with the NAU Occupational Therapy program teaching classes and helping in the kids program. You may see teens taking classes or school aged children enjoying programs tailored just for them. The majority of our women stay home rather than getting away in the summer, something many of us experienced for ourselves last year. When boredom, heat, and kids are home from school, you know what happens? (There are countless answers, but let’s focus on the positive.) Resourcefulness happens. When conditions are less than ideal, resilience kicks in. The desire to make things better pushes us out there, out of our comfort zones and into discovery.  

That’s how U found Hope. She says she was in a slump – existing more than thriving. She’d passed the new Hope center in her community multiple times, but even the thought of ringing the doorbell and meeting new people required more energy than U felt she had. One morning, she was done feeling stuck, so U mustered the courage and drove to Hope. When Hope staff invited her to join a class that had just started, she went. “It was an immediate dose of joy,” says U. “I didn’t tell my husband I’d gone To Hope, but when he came home, he noticed something different about me right away. Now he’ll ask me, ‘Are you going to Hope today?’ He gets so happy when I say ‘yes’!”   

H came to Hope for different reasons. She had two diapers left for her son and she was four days from getting paid. “I’m used to money being tight,” H says. “I can make meals stretch, but it’s not as easy to make diapers stretch, and a baby’s got to have diapers.” H didn’t know if Hope could help, but she was willing to find out. What she found was a place that offered more than just a pack of diapers – they offered a solution to her tight budget. “They showed me the Boutique and told me I could get things with the points I earned taking classes. It was a no brainer for me! Getting food, diapers, and utility assistance from Hope has been so helpful. I haven’t had a financial emergency since I started coming to Hope!” 

Both these women had different needs that brought them to Hope, but it’s the intrinsic need for relationship that keeps them coming back. As humans, we are created with a desire to belong and contribute to something bigger than ourselves. The first step is courage to seek out the resources we need. Our classes this month dive deeper into living courageously and resiliently, with topics such as fear, lies, speaking up, and purpose. If these topics resonate with you, stay tuned. Next month, we’ll discuss how YOU can resource yourself – an important part of personal growth and a concept we know a lot about.