Carlton’s Story

Carlton’s Story

A single dad receives a helping hand in getting back on his feet in the aftermath of drug addiction.

In December 2020, Carlton – a single father of 3-year-old twins and a 4-year-old – was beginning a new job and recently had his three children returned to his care.  If Carlton could maintain steady employment and provide a stable home for his kids, then he was on track to have custody become permanent.   Things were looking up, but in the weeks leading up to Christmas, the family was unexpectedly forced to move to a new house.  Carlton was suddenly in urgent need of furniture and other necessities for a new home.  

Photo by Wise Move SA on Unsplash

Around the same time, one of New Life’s pastors had a friend with a house full of furniture to give away.  We checked CarePortal to see if any families needed furniture, and that was how we first connected with Carlton. 

When our team delivered the furniture, they learned that the children were sleeping together on old, tattered mattresses on the floor.  We helped Carlton connect with two of our partner organizations, Sleepyhead Beds and Sleep in Heavenly Peace, where the family received three new bed frames and replacement mattresses for everyone.  Our volunteers visited Carlton several more times over the next several months and continued to meet needs as they arose.   

Along the way, we got to know Carlton and we saw how hard he worked to provide a better life for himself and his children – working a full-time job with frequent overtime shifts, being faithful in keeping his court and outpatient appointments, and being a good dad to his little girl and twins.

 

“…I’m trying to break the cycle, focus on raising my kids and get to work…”

Over the summer, Carlton’s car broke down.  He tried to repair it himself, unsuccessfully, and a crisis began to develop for the family.  If Carlton couldn’t get to work, he might lose his job; if he lost the job, he might lose his ability to keep a stable home for his children. If that happened, then the children could be returned to state care. 

Lack of transportation also meant that Carlton was suddenly cut off from accessing some of the free community resources he’d been relying on to help him get back on his feet. 

A member of our team got involved and tried to help with the repairs, but it was clear that the work would be complicated and potentially very expensive.  In God’s providence, during this same time, a couple from New Life was starting a new non-profit, Road Worthy, to assist needy families with vehicle repairs.   We told them Carlton’s story and they were happy to take him as their first client!  

Road Worthy determined the cost of repairing Carlton’s vehicle would unfortunately exceed its actual value.  Instead, they generously purchased a used van for him.  The van was delivered in late August, and Carlton was both grateful and deeply encouraged by the many months of care and support he received.  

Our volunteers will continue to check in with Carlton every few months to ask how they are doing. We are so grateful for the opportunity we have had as Neighbors Who Care to come alongside and bless this family.

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