They inspire us every day.
Our clients never cease to amaze us. They’ve been through unspeakable hardships, but they weather the storm and come out on the other side wiser, stronger and more determined than ever to build a better life for themselves and their families.
When you donate to On the Road Lending, your gift is more than just dollars. It’s giving encouragement to those who those who refuse to give up on a better and brighter future. It’s giving hope to those who need it most. It’s giving support to those living in a world where the odds are stacked against them.
We wanted to take a little time to praise some of our clients*. Their stories are different, but there’s one thing that ties them all together: the resolve not to give up.
Ten weeks before they were supposed to be married, Janet’s fiance left her. Not only did he back out of the wedding, he also left her with all of the bills. It’s hard to plan for something like this, especially as a single mother. Shortly after she was laid off from her full-time job, relying solely on unemployment to take care of herself and her son. As you can imagine, unemployment only helps so much, and Janet lost her car after falling behind in payments. And it’s hard to keep up with your bills when you keep getting hired then laid off from your job, which is exactly what happened to her.
But despite those hits, she remained determined as ever. She was hired back full-time to the job that laid her off, started a part-time job and came to us to help her get financially fit and into a car. Stable jobs, a reliable car and refusing to admit defeat has helped Janet create a better life for her and her son.
Jacob had a rough childhood. He was raised by a single mother who despite working hard struggled to get by. Jacob joined a gang, selling drugs to help pay the bills. He had every intention of going to college after graduating high school, but ended up getting incarcerated two times, spending about 17 years in prison. But that’s not the end of his story because he refused to let it be the end. While incarcerated, he by participated in programs on personal finances, budgeting and credit. He worked hard to better himself, and once out of prison he decided he’d work just as hard to better the lives of others. Today he works as a peer educator in the Prison Entrepreneur Program and plans to attend college for business management. In addition, he works with young, at-risk men who need positive role models and mentorship.
Maria learned about On the Road Lending while attending a session at Genesis Women’s Shelter. The single mother of one had recently gotten a divorce, and she and her daughter, Joy, were receiving help at the shelter to escape domestic violence. Maria has two degrees from the University of Mexico and is multi-lingual—as is her daughter. To say she’s a hard worker is an understatement: Once we got her in a car, she made sure to pay more than was due each month.
And that paid off! Not only is Maria one of our earliest clients but she’s the second to pay off her car note!
Money problems started for Susan soon after she enrolled in cosmetology school. She was a high school dropout who wanted more for her life so this seemed to be the perfect next step in her journey to a profitable career. Finding out she was pregnant should have been a blessing, but when she informed the school they told her she could no longer take classes because of the chemicals. Despite only attending for a few days, they still charged her the full tuition without giving her any sort of break. She found other employment, but this issue took a major hit on her finances and credit.
As the years rolled on, Susan raised five daughters, and if you ask her she’ll tell you having children has been her greatest joy! Once her daughters left the nest, she found herself depressed and her job performance declined resulting in a demotion. She fell behind on bills and became homeless. She was taken in by the Salvation Army and, determined to do and be better, enrolled in a program that helped her take control of her finances and get into a stable residence.
Susan’s life has changed tremendously. She’s adopted four of her grandchildren (and through us has a van to cart all of them around), she has a great full-time job, and she’s currently working on getting her bachelor’s degree in Christian Studies!
*We’ve changed the names in these personal stories.