Beatrice’s family from Cameroon sent her just enough money each month to rent a small room. She brushed up against homelessness because her landlord sold the build- ing she was living in. Beatrice felt lost and alone in Minnesota until the beginning of 2008 — she obtained a part–time cleaning position, began learning English at the English Learning Center, Our Saviour’s Housing (OSH) sister program, and moved into Our Saviour’s Transitional Housing program.
She remembers feeling instantly safe at OSH. The staff pointed her in the right direction with helpful resources. Her dream was to obtain full–time employment (someday advocating for battered women again), to be reunited with her children, and to own a home.
While living at OSH for almost two years, Beatrice rapidly improved her English, obtained another part–time job as an On–Site Supervisor assisting adults with developmental disabilities, and saved her money to achieve her dream.
Beatrice took the bus at 5 a.m. for two–hours to make it to her first job on time in Plymouth and then to her next job afterwards. She would return home at 9 p.m. each night.
January 2010, Beatrice saved enough money to fly her two teenage sons, Toussaint and Beernard here to live with her in a small apartment. OSH provided the reunited family with furniture, food, winter gear and resources.
Beatrice began working with Thrivent Financial, who matched her savings by 300% and with City of the Lakes to purchase a house in 2009. After much persistence and determination, Beatrice and her family moved into a beautiful house, in Northeast Minneapolis the summer of 2010!
Beatrice believes she has been lucky — she attributes her success to organizations that supported her throughout her American journey, great organizations like OSH.
“The staff at OSH believed I would succeed even when I didn’t. They encouraged me to continue moving forward,” said Beatrice.
What’s next? Beatrice wants to return to college for an American Social Work degree (she graduated in Cameroon with a Social Work degree that will not transfer) and someday advocate for women who have experienced domestic violence.