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Helping Neighbors Starts at Home

On The Up And Up

May 4, 2015

Single mother Dana of Festus wanted more than anything to provide a better life for her children, ages six and eight, but her lack of transportation kept her trapped in a cycle of poverty.

If she only had a car she could take a second job so she could afford to pay rent and provide for her children. She could take her daughter, who was born with a heart condition, to her doctor appointments in St. Louis. She could spend more time with her children in the evenings instead of coming home at night exhausted from making the three mile trek from work.

When she came home to an eviction notice on the front door, she knew it was time to reach out for help and called her local SVDP conference.

For people in need like Dana, a costly car repair can set off a chain of events that can keep them unable to meet their basic needs, let alone rise out of poverty. Without reliable transportation, they cannot get to work and could get laid off. Soon they can no longer afford childcare and fall behind on rent. Within a few weeks, they are left to wonder whether they will have a place to live next month. SVDP's Car Program provides a variety of transportation assistance, including car repairs at reduced costs, facilitating low-interest car loans for those in need and coordinating direct exchanges of road-ready vehicles between donors and clients. 

SVDP’s Car Program provided funding to purchase the car Dana so desperately needed. Dana’s new car has empowered her to lift herself out of poverty and into self-sufficiency: She has started applying for a second job, can drive her daughter to her doctor appointments and has more free time to spend with her family. 

Read more success stories.