It's been a few months since I returned from the far north and my efforts to get a roof over Suzanne and her kitties, so here's an update:
There were many generous pledges made for Suzanne, but unfortunately not enough to get her housed. We collected enough for her to have her truck fixed so that she could make the trip back to Los Angeles, and for her to cover some of her immediate expenses like gas and cat food.
She's returned to Los Angeles (Santa Monica, more specifically) in the hopes of getting subsidized housing. To that end, she had a meeting with the board yesterday. They gave her a pile of papers to go through ("You have to be a lawyer to figure all this out," she said) and sent her on her way with the suggestion she call back in ten days.
The system is complicated for someone who's already got a multitude of daily challenges. You have to call once a week to check for new vacancies, then go up to the office with your voucher and card to show that you are actually part of the program, then they'll hand you the list of new vacancies, then you and every other person on the program go door-to-door meeting landlords, filling out more applications, all the while hoping they're part of the "section 8" rental assistance program and all the while hoping they haven't found a "better" candidate.
All the leg work and paper work is discouraging for Suzanne, who's getting worn down by the battle.
But Suzanne being SUZANNE, she continues to write in her journal with the intention of making it into her life story whenever she gets a real desk and some stability. She continues to want to offer her talents, art and services to the world. She's looking for work as a massage therapist, and has already begun cleaning apartments for some friends she's met while walking their dogs by her truck.
She continues to meet Angels on a daily basis, but she refuses to ask for help. A small few know intuitively and leave her special gifts; others simply say "cool truck" and smile as they walk by.
I continue to hold hope that this network of Angels will pull through for her and find her and her 4 kitties a cozy place to live.
Please send this far and wide.