How a Homeless Mother Received a Second Chance With the Help Of Dozens of Strangers

Today, Traci is back on her feet — thanks to the power of kindness and connection.

In May, Traci, a single mother in San Jose, California, filled out the “Get Help” form on the Pandemic of Love website. She had lost her job and her home due to the pandemic. She and her 13-year-old daughter were living in a motel and were at risk of living on the street. 

Sheridan Amarillas, the local chapter leader for Pandemic of Love, reached out immediately when she saw Traci’s form come in. “My father experienced homelessness and was living in his car with his dog in a Walmart parking lot. Traci’s story hit close to my heart,” recounts Sheridan. Sheridan knew that with some help, Traci could get back on her feet. 

“I knew this was doable,” says Sheridan, “and I made a promise to Traci that I would not abandon her.” Sheridan never did. She quickly found donors to ensure they stayed off the street and find Traci a good job with steady income. Next, she found donors who generously provided the required deposits to secure a small apartment for Traci. To top it off, Sheridan found an interior designer who pitched in with furniture. 

Today, Traci is still gainfully employed, and she and her daughter love their new home. “The other day, Traci called me again crying. But this time it was because she was so full of gratitude. She called to thank our community for giving her a second chance at life,” says Sheridan.

Pandemic of Love is a grassroots, volunteer-led mutual aid organization that seeks to find assistance for people adversely affected by the pandemic. 

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