Building a New Life: Prospective Homeowner Partner Jasmine Palmer
In her own unvarnished words, Jasmine Palmer “learned to be a responsible adult” later in life than she would have liked. But after years of “living like an adolescent teenager getting in trouble all the time,” she found herself at a crossroads, separated from her two children and needing to ask herself some hard questions about her future.
With her then 4- and 7-year-old daughters under the care of her mother, Jasmine entered and successfully completed a stringent six-month residential treatment program for substance abuse. She then reunited with her daughters and moved in with her mother, where she remains today as she begins to engage in the “sweat equity” activities in partnership with Habitat for Humanity that will allow her to become a proud and productive homeowner. Three years clean and with a full-time job as a counselor with a nine-client caseload at the same rehabilitation center she attended, Jasmine is also working to finishing her AA degree at SRJC. Her career goal is to becoming a counselor for women in jail. Having long looked for places to move so she could live independently with her daughters, Jasmine was discouraged by the high housing prices of Sonoma County. Then one day she saw an ad from Habitat for Humanity and she wondered if she might qualify. It turned out she was an ideal candidate: committed, focused, employed, with a clear need for a home but an income gap that could not be bridged without the kind of assistance that Habitat for Humanity provides. Over the past few months, she submitted paperwork that included bank statements, credit reports, tax records, recommendations and more. The happy result was approval of her application for a two-bedroom home in the Woodland Hills neighborhood in Cotati, where construction begin this month. Just relating the process makes her grin and glow with pride.
“I did a lot of damage when I was in trouble,” she says. “It was pretty cool to be able to prove that I’d re-established everything. It still doesn’t seem real yet, like it’s too good to be true. But I’m ready to be independent. I’m ready to be Mom again.”
To Our Faith-Build Partners
If church members or staff are reading this and wondering whether joining with Habitat for Humanity of Sonoma County might be a good way to support your own mission of helping to build a better world, please know that we would love to have you join us! Financial support and volunteer labor provided by our faith partners is a vital element in Habitat’s success. Some congregations designate funds in their budgets for Habitat Sonoma County, while others hold special collections, fundraisers, and other events that help keep our doors open and our plans afloat to keep building homes for worthy local applicants! Others provide volunteer work crews to our All Faiths House initiatives. The All Faiths House brings faith communities together to focus on funding and building a home in partnership with a low-income family. If that sounds like something aligned with your congregational vision, please consider joining us! Find out more by contacting our director of volunteer services at [email protected] or by call 578-7707 ext. 105.