From horror to hope

Tina and her children were living in a tent in someone’s backyard. 

“It was so hot,” Tina said through tears. “Rain, sun, and storms, we were in the tent.” 

But that was better than suffering more abuse and having her head filled with lies that left her with no hope. Tina endured a physically and verbally abusive relationship. Often her kids witnessed the violence of their father towards Tina. He would continuously beat her and abuse her with his words. 

“I wasn’t allowed to do anything. Not even to have a job.” Tina says. “I was totally dependent upon him for everything.” And worst of all, she says, “My children saw a lot of the violence.” 

Sadly, at Metropolitan, we encounter many women with the same history of abuse who need safety, stability, and hope. 

Finally, Tina was able to convince her abuser to let her get a job. It only paid minimum wage. Feeling stuck, Tina couldn’t find any place for her family to live. Secretly, with only a little money left over from her checks, she would fill out costly rental applications only to be turned down. 

She would try to leave to stay with friends or in motels, only to have her abuser found out where she was and force her to come back — often returning to crueler punishments. 

She felt there was no hope and wanted to give up. The lingering words of her abuser also haunted her. “I kept hearing my abuser in my head saying I’m nothing without him, that I wouldn’t make it,” Tina says. 

“Me and my kids would just hold hands and pray. We ended up here, and it’s been great. An answered prayer.” 

The final straw to leave her abuser came when she saw how deeply the abuse was affecting her children. She realized they were traumatized by what they were witnessing. Tina and her children quietly packed up and decided never to turn back. 

They stayed in their cramped van in the Florida heat, on the stiff floor at their friend’s homes, and panhandled for money, which Tina shared was embarrassing to do. Finally, they found shelter in a tent in someone’s backyard. The tent had enough space for them to lay out, but no bathroom and only a small hot plate to cook meals. Tina and her family had a small cooler to keep a few things cold. Around this time, Tina was told about Metropolitan Ministries. She decided to get help. It was a shot in the dark, but she knew she needed she had to try. 

“My prayer was for God to deliver me.” 

For weeks, Tina and her children lived in fear that their family would be torn apart due to where they lived. Through harsh heat and severe storms, they lived in the uncomfortable and cramped tent. It wasn’t long before Tina got the call she had been praying for. Her family was able to move into Metropolitan Ministries.  

“When I got the call that we had a safe place to go, it was like a million weights lifted,” Tina says. 

Your support is what makes moments like these possible for women like Tina and their families. Your support is the hope they need for a brighter future. 

When they moved in to Hope Hall and realized they had beds to lay in and a warm shower in their private rooms, Tina shared they felt more relieved than ever. Metropolitan was safe, and they were finally home. 

“Me and my kids would just hold hands and pray. We ended up here, and it’s been great. An answered prayer.” 

Tina’s whole family is finding the help they need like counseling and school assistance for the kids. She is taking classes so she can find a good job to help support her family.   

Because of your support and compassion, families like Tina do not have to endure abuse. They are thriving in a safe, loving, and supportive environment as they rebuild on the road to self-sufficiency. 

When you partner with Metropolitan Ministries, you get the chance to have a lifelong impact on the families we encounter each day who are running on empty and need hope.