When the pandemic hit, Lakisha and her husband, parents to a toddler with a new baby on the way, were met with unforeseen challenges. A high-risk pregnancy meant having to leave her job and potentially losing the care for her child.
The world did not know the huge impact the pandemic would have on all of our lives. Some people lost their loved ones and others, their jobs. For many, 2020 was a hopeless year and for Lakisha, it was no exception.
Dealing with a high-risk pregnancy is worrisome for any expecting parent. Add a pandemic to the mix and no doubt, circumstances inevitably become even more stressful.
Due to her high-risk pregnancy, Lakisha had to stop working in order to protect her unborn baby, herself and her family from COVID-19. Early in the pandemic, Lakisha stopped taking her child, Heaven, to the United Way Center for Excellence in Early Education because she could no longer drive. At that point, she had stopped working and did not have enough money to spend on gas and she decided to stay with Heaven at home.
Lakisha’s main concern was that Heaven would no longer have her daily routine nor her lessons. She was also concerned about losing the benefits associated with the Early Head Start program. She was stressed and overwhelmed dealing with her family’s present situation. Not only could the stress mean she could lose her unborn baby but her child’s care and education were also at risk.
Disappointed and concerned at the thought that her husband was their only provider and a second child was on the way, Lakisha felt worried that her husband would no longer be able to afford their rent.
She contacted her Family Engagement Specialist, Rose, and asked for support and resources to help her to pay their rent. The specialist shared with her the financial assistance program offered by United Way. Lakisha applied and was able to receive a check to pay her family’s rent.
In addition to the support Lakisha was able to receive from United Way, she was also able to keep her child in the Early Head Start program. Something she would have lost due to the child’s absences.
“As a Family Engagement Specialist I had the privilege to witness the successful growth of Lakisha’s family. She achieved her goals and they are very grateful for the support that United Way Miami provided,” Rose said.
Ultimately, Lakisha and her husband overcame these difficult times. She delivered a healthy baby and feels blessed at their second chance. “United Way has expanded our minds to always have goals for the future and for our family and how to work towards achieving them. United Way gave me the peace of mind to have the child care we needed to go to work and study to improve our way of life. We are very appreciative for United Way,” Lakisha shared.