My name is Crystal Archuleta. I have lived at Beyond Homes since December 2018 and became a scholar with Women with a Cause in February 2019. I have three children, ages 13, 7, and 6. In May of this year, I graduated with my BSSW. Currently, I am an advanced standing student in the MSW program and anticipate graduating in May of 2021. My current internship is within child welfare, which is my ultimate career goal.
During the first semester in the BSSW program, my children and I found ourselves homeless due to gentrification. I was unsure of where we would go and how I would stay in school. I heard about Women with a Cause (WWAC), and I thought textbooks and parking reimbursements would be beneficial as a financially struggling student, so I decided to apply. However, I was in for much more than I could have imagined.
Upon submitting my application and disclosing my living situation, they immediately referred me to BeyondHome. My children and I were accepted in the BeyondHome Self-Sufficiency Program the following week. Since then, both programs have been such a blessing. The services my family has benefitted from include counseling, mentoring, community/holiday events, parent coaching, school supplies, food bank resources, and regular meetings with my case manager. Also, I found myself in a custody dispute with my ex and BeyondHome not only connected me with an attorney, but they paid the retainer fee on my behalf.
These programs and services not only benefit my family in the short term, but they also provide the tools I need to reach self-sufficiency. I am confident that I will not only graduate, but I will do so as a single mother and first-generation student, thus setting an example for my children. BeyondHome and Women with a Cause have played a huge role in my confidence and my future.