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A Mother’s Life Transformed: Housing Success through Family Promise’s Diversion Program

Updated: May 3, 2023


*Image changed for guest confidentiality.

My name is Jenna, and I’m a single mom of a 10-year-old son and a 6-year-old daughter. I’m 100% Italian, and I absolutely love to cook with my family—I make everything homemade.


I am very much involved in our community, from sports and cheerleading programs to the event planning committee at our church.


I never thought I’d have to worry about not being able to pay bills or put food on the table.

I always had an amazing job and was very financially secure. I never thought I’d have to worry about not being able to pay bills or put food on the table. And then it happened, completely unexpectedly: COVID-19.


I was sent home from work on March 11th, 2020, with my computer and practically every item in my desk. I went home that day thinking it would only be for two weeks, then everything would be back to normal.


Shortly thereafter came the day I had dreaded.


I received a phone call from my boss that he had to cut salaries by 50% and that I needed to apply for partial unemployment benefits. A month later, we all were laid off.



I had never collected unemployment before, and the system was delayed by almost 10 months due to the influx of applicants.


I was going through my savings rapidly. I spent countless sleepless nights fearing we would lose our home due to nonpayment of rent, and I wasn’t sure how we would survive.


Family Promise saved me from losing everything I had worked so hard for.

My Property Manager told me to call Family Promise of Morris County. I didn’t know what Family Promise was, and I felt awful and embarrassed for having to contact them. But I did it and am so thankful for the resources given to me.


Family Promise saved me from losing everything I had worked so hard for. They provided so much assistance for my kids and me and guided me in the right direction for other programs I didn’t even know existed.


Family Promise of Morris County's Holiday Gift Fair provides gifts for families in their programs.

They helped me complete a COVID Emergency Rental Assistance application, paid a portion of my back rent, and even helped me with Christmas gifts for my children.


The staff at Family Promise were beyond understanding, caring, and had a great deal of compassion. My stress level subsided, and I was finally able to sleep. I knew I wasn’t alone and that I had so much support from them, which made a huge difference.


I hit a bump in the road—a bump I never expected to hit—but I made it!

Today, three years post-pandemic and after being unemployed for 22 months, I was hired by a construction company as an Operations Director. My salary increased and my supervisors are amazing to work for.


My children and I recently moved into a beautiful, larger, renovated apartment in the same development where we’ve lived for seven years. I hit a bump in the road—a bump I never expected to hit—but I made it! We made it.



I hope to find a way to give back to Family Promise of Morris County so that I can be a part of the support system that helped me at my lowest point.


It doesn’t take much to make a difference in someone’s life. Knowing you’re not alone is one of the best feelings to experience.



If you or someone you know is experiencing a housing crisis, please contact Our Promise Drop-In Resource Center at 973-644-0100.



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