Amie Turk and daughter

When Amie arrived at New Directions Shelter in October 2014, she had just given birth to her daughter the month before. While pregnant, Amie had become involved with Child Protective Services (CPS), and after the baby was born, CPS deemed their home environment unsuitable, primarily because the individuals she was living with were drug users. Amie walked into New Directions Shelter, off the street, seeking assistance and we were fortunate enough to have a room available for her and her baby.

While staying at the Shelter, Amie fully cooperated with CPS, including meeting with workers, attending court hearings and completing all evaluations. This took up much of Amie’s time and she wasn’t able to spend sufficient time looking for employment which she desperately needed. She was able to access affordable childcare services and took her daughter, Phebe, to a childcare center so she was free to get things accomplished. Amie applied for and was accepted for rental assistance through Capax Infiniti Housing’s Tenant-Based Rental Assistance program. During November 2014, she and her daughter moved into their own apartment.

Soon after leaving the Shelter, Amie found employment at Caribou Coffee working 30 hours a week. She rode the DART bus every morning to get her daughter to daycare and get to work, and then again in the afternoon to pick her daughter up and get home.

Amie stayed in her apartment for one year while receiving rental assistance. Towards the end of that one year she was concerned that she would not be able to pay the full rent once the rent assistance expired and that she would fall again into homelessness. She also believed she needed additional assistance to help her achieve her goals and ultimately financial independence. She applied for an opening in The Home Connection program and was immediately accepted in December 2015.

Since she has been in the program she is working diligently to pay off all her debts and start budgeting for a savings account. She obtained a position with Bidwell Riverside Center’s Distribution Center which is the most utilized food pantry in Central Iowa, and was recently promoted to Shift Supervisor. She really enjoys her work at Bidwell assisting individuals and families that are experiencing food insecurity.

Amie hopes to start school part time at Des Moines Area Community College and work towards an Associate Degree in Human Services to further her career.

Additionally, Amie has returned to the New Directions Shelter to do volunteer work, including organizing an Easter egg hunt for children staying at the Shelter over the Easter holiday (which she pledged to do in her shelter client exit survey.) This past year Amie has gotten more involved with the Special Olympics putting in quite a few hours.

I just want to say thank you to everyone for helping me achieve my goals during my stay. I’m so blessed I found you all! I feel that New Directions has helped me become a better mother to my daughter!! There isn’t enough room on this paper to describe how grateful I am to you all! I would so love to give back one day & become a volunteer. Thank you so much and Happy Holidays!
– Aime Turk, New Directions Shelter 2014