Accident Disabled Mother Of Two Seeks Housing Grant For New Family Home
by Rachael Casalena
(Phoenixville, PA, USA)
Me and my two children
In 2002, I was in a motor vehicle accident that left me with a T8 SPI and a Complete Brachial Plexus Injury.
While I spent several weeks in a drug-induced coma to relieve the pressure in my head, the doctors worked on each any every emerging problem.
I was 24 at the time with two young children and a husband. After four months in the hospital I came home and the doctors told my husband and my family that I would require around-the-clock care.
I was not satisfied with that answer so I worked very hard to teach myself how to dress, tie my shoes, change a diaper, and cook.
Needless to say, my husband didn't "sign up for this" and he left me. We've been divorced for nearly five years and we haven't seen or heard from him since.
So I am asking for a grant so I can move out of my parent's basement with my, now 14 and 9 year old, children.
My greatest problem is my only income comes from SSDI and since I am wheelchair-bound and unable to drive, I need to stay close enough to my family in case something happens and I need help.
I would love to be able to look out a window and know if the sun is shining or the rain is falling because I have zero windows and it gets quite depressing.
I am currently putting myself through school trying to get a degree that I can use to get off of Medicare and raise my children by way of a job.
For now, I have just entered my 3rd of 5 years and my current neighborhood is filled with older couples so my children must sit in the house and play video games for entertainment.
I want them to be able to play outside with friends, like I did as a child. My son, unfortunately, is suffering from a few mental issues that require psychiatric care and medicine that has put him over the healthy weight limit.
I believe if he could get out playing more that would help him mental and health issues.
I would like to think, with a grant, I could get help to either buy a small house or help me pay rent on an apartment.
Any money for school would be amazing but that is a far after-thought to getting my children out of this basement and "under the thumb" of my parents.
I do not have a specific number of financial help in mind but I do live in Chester County, PA and I know life is not cheap or very wheelchair accessible with their apartments around here, so any dollar amount that you could help me with is greatly appreciated.
I thank you for your time listening to my story.
Rachael Casalena, Phoenixville, PA