Patrick Atkins

Dear Generous Giving Hope Donor:

I feel very privileged to have been given the opportunity to share with you my experience with Giving Hope and how in a very short time they have changed not only my life, but that of my 12 year old son. 2012 and 2013 were really rough years for me. In August 2012, my wife of eight years and I decided to divorce. At the time our son was eight years old and I took on the task of being the custodial parent. In February 2013, I suffered a debilitating stroke that left me in a coma for 2 weeks and in the hospital for another 4 weeks. Because of the stroke, I couldn’t be an auto tech any more. I was unable to care for my son and I ended up living on the streets of Denton.

I had never been homeless before. Before becoming homeless myself, I thought every homeless person was lazy and on drugs. It was a really rude awakening when at the age of 51 I was on the street with no prospects of getting off. From 2013 to 2016, I had limited contact with my son and was only able to see him on the short walk from his school across the street to his apartment in the afternoon.

In September 2016, I began receiving Social Security Disability Payments. I was then able to get a hotel every other weekend so I could spend more time with my son. That was very expensive and because of it, I never had enough money to get a permanent place.

I met Wendy and Tyheshia (Ty) from Giving Hope in February 2017 at the Emily Fowler Library. I remember that it was a really cold day and due to my conditions I couldn’t stay outside to fill out the survey, but I really needed their help. Ty stepped inside the library with me to complete the survey.

I am not tech savvy at all, so Ty programmed her number into my phone, so I would be able to contact her. Once I started working with Ty it took less than a month for her to find me a place that met my physical needs, and was within my budget. Ms. Debbie and Ms. Kelly provided my son and I with all the items needed to make a house a home. They gave us some of everything from dish soap, to toilet paper, towels, and even a mop.

I have 3 goals in life: 1. To have my own place, 2. To have my son with me, and 3. To see my son succeed in life. With the help of Giving Hope, one of my goals has been accomplished and the second is not far behind. I can also now be a role model to my son and see that third goal completed as well.

I don’t know what all goes into doing what they do, I have repeatedly told Ty “I couldn’t do your Job.” She has told me that a lot of what they do is possible because my fellow Texans donated money, time, and everything else under the sun. I wish I could thank each and every one of you personally. You have given me the opportunity to better myself and the chance to succeed in life. For that reason I now want to help give hope to others, just as you all have given it to me. Your contributions mean so much to me. I can never thank you enough for your continued support of this organization. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me not only hope, but my son back.

Sincerely,

Patrick Atkins