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Quilt, diapers would help mom with 6-month-old twins

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.

A Phoenix apartment offers refuge from abuse for a mother of infant girls. But the fledgling family has very few material comforts.

Fleeing from her husband while six months' pregnant, the 24-year-old woman endured verbal abuse that escalated into physical violence as her pregnancy progressed. Unease turned to terror when the woman’s husband slammed her into a wall, causing her to fall.

Fear for the twins she was carrying compelled the woman to leave. Any hope of family support had died seven years earlier with the woman’s mother, also a victim of domestic violence.

Encouraged by her mother’s friend, the woman called Community Works’ HelpLine and devised a safety plan. It entailed abandoning not only her home and most personal possessions, but also her job and car.

Giving birth a few months later motivated the woman to embark on a new life, although she struggled to make sense of her husband’s actions. Apart from her daughters, the woman’s greatest gift this Christmas is to “celebrate her freedom and safety,” says her Community Works advocate.

A new blanket and quilt would warm the woman’s double bed. Pots and pans would be a welcome addition to her very minimal kitchenware. Bus tokens would help the woman get to appointments.

The 6-month-old girls need size 3-5 diapers and warm winter clothes or gift cards with which their mother can purchase the items. Books for the babies, art supplies for their mother and a small tree with a few ornaments would bring the family holiday cheer. Monetary assistance with the woman’s electric bill would brighten her outlook for the new year.

To help, call Gerry Sea at 541-779-2393, ext. 222.

— Sarah Lemon