As family struggles, mother and kids need help

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. Once that need is filled, donations may be distributed to others in need.

Family games and somewhere soft for the kids to rest their heads would make a happier holiday for this pregnant, struggling mom nominated by Kids Unlimited.

After the father of her children went back to drugs, Tanya moved to Medford in order to escape a neighborhood and family life in which she was surrounded by drug use.

The sole provider for her family and struggling financially, Tanya, along with her 11-year-old daughter, Carrie, and 6-year-old son, Jonathan, moved in with a roommate in White City, and she commuted to Ashland every day for work.

Paying her rent, gas and monthly bills was difficult, but she somehow managed until her roommate recently and unexpectedly moved out, leaving her in a bad situation.

Tanya and her family were forced to move and they are now living in a hotel. She is trying to move into a new apartment but is struggling to save for her deposit and pay her weekly hotel charge at the same time. In the process of making ends meet, she has had to sell their beds, night stands and television.

The family would like anything to replace what they have lost in the process of moving.

"Even just a mattress so my kids will have something to sleep on," Tanya told Kids Unlimited staffers.

They could also use general household supplies, including towels, sheet sets, blankets and cleaning supplies.

Tanya's baby is due in February, so diapers, wipes and baby clothes would also be greatly appreciated.

Carrie would like a curling iron, nail polish, lotion and other gifts from Bath & Body Works. She wears size 12 clothes and likes hoodies and jeans.

"And socks," Tanya said. "She always needs socks!"

If Carrie gets a bed, she said, she would like a new comforter. Her favorite colors are turquoise and purple.

Jonathan, age 6, is a new reader and budding poet. He could use educational toys and books. He wears size 6 clothes. He loves cars and other age-appropriate toys.

The family collectively would like family games so they can play together. Carrie adds that she has always wanted electronic Monopoly.

When Tanya asked what she wanted for herself, she said, "Nothing for me, just a roof over my family's head."

If you would like to help this family, call Terra at Kids Unlimited at 541-210-1137.

Reach reporter Sanne Specht at 541-776-4497 or

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