After her story was featured in local media, Maureen Wall, a cancer-stricken homeless woman from Chester County, received an outpouring of support from strangers, writes Alfred Lubrano for The Philadelphia Inquirer.
People who read about the plight of Wall and her husband Don, who lost both his job and house, decided to take action. They have sent the pair money, food, and prayers. Adrienne Bearden, a West Chester makeup artist, even started a GoFundMe page to try and help them with more substantial means.
“I’m kind of overwhelmed by the reaction,” said Don.
In addition to personal contributions, the Chester County Housing Authority has also started a process that may provide the couple with a place to live. Meanwhile, the pair has been contacted by a lawyer who offered help in getting Supplemental Security Income for Maureen.
And the help keeps coming. Guy Ciarrocchi, president and CEO of the Chester County Chamber of Business and Industry, contacted the county commissioners to see what role they could play.
“I lost my dad, grandmother, and brother to cancer,” he said. “The Walls are seven minutes from my office. With the network I have available, there’s a way to make life bearable for them.”
The Office of the Chester County Commissioners provided VISTA Today with this statement: “When this story came to our attention, our staff called Mr. and Mrs. Wall and met with them to let them know about our County programs and services to help them find housing, employment, financial assistance, and medical assistance. We remain ready and eager to help them however they choose.
“Even though Chester County is the most affluent County in Pennsylvania, homelessness can happen anywhere. That’s why we’ve funded and prioritized programs to help get people back on their feet when they’ve fallen on hard times and lost their housing. If you or a loved one are experiencing homelessness, please reach out to ConnectPoints at 1-800-935-3181. Under Decade to Doorways, our county plan to end homelessness in Chester County, we have several robust programs to help people find housing. For example, we have a Permanent Supportive Housing Program to offer housing in a supportive environment. We also have Housing Choice Vouchers, as well as a Rapid Rehousing Program, which serves as a temporary rent subsidy to help people get back on their feet. More information is at decadetodoorways.org.”
Read more about the Walls in The Philadelphia Inquirer here.