EDITOR'S NOTE: Light One Candle is an annual series sponsored by the Mail Tribune that focuses on an individual, group or agency that could use a helping hand during the holiday season. The series continues daily until Dec. 23. To see previous stories, go to www.mailtribune.com/holidayneed.
Gift cards for gas, some books and a few toys would help this abused mother and her two boys rebuild their holiday spirit.
Amanda, 32, first met with an advocate from Dunn House Outreach at Community Works in March 2011.
Her supervisor at work helped arrange the meeting. He had seen Amanda come to work with bruises on her arm and had noticed she seemed very shaken up.
He also knew about domestic violence from a presentation Community Works did at their offices, and so he approached Amanda.
Amanda told her boss she needed help — that her husband had hurt her again. She was afraid for her life and worried for the children, Andy, 5, and Brian, 11.
Amanda and the advocate met regularly for several months during her lunch break at work. Amanda formulated a plan for how she would get herself and her children to safety.
She knew that once she took action, she had to act fast.
On the day she decided to flee, Amanda went to the courthouse and got a restraining order. Then she and her children went to Dunn House and stayed for five weeks.
With the support of her employer, Amanda was able to continue working part time. In September, she and the children moved into an apartment in Central Point. The boys are in a new school and Amanda is participating in a support group and continuing to learn about domestic violence. The family also is getting counseling.
"Amanda is committed to building a life with her children that is free from violence, and will not be stopped," says her Dunn House outreach advocate.
"She could use some help for Christmas as she has a very limited income and wants her boys to be able to have a good holiday now that they are healing."
Andy likes Legos and books and would really like a push scooter. Brian is hoping for a science kit, a MP3 player and a gift card for a book. Amanda would appreciate a gift card to get a new jacket (hers is quite worn), a gift card to get a self-help book she has been wanting, and a gas card to help her and the kids get to some of the Christmas activities around the area.
For more information, contact Gerry Sea at Community Works at 541-779-2393, ext. 222, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Note: Once each family/person featured in the Light One Candle series has had their needs met, any additional donations will be given to others in need within the agency's client list.