Losing a job is an emotional and financial shock, especially for a single parent with dependent children.
Sylvie Lang, age 36, enjoyed a successful career in retail management. She had started as a clerk at the age of seventeen and had held a
variety of different positions as she worked her way up to the management level. A single mom, Sylvie has two sons, one now in high
school and the other in first grade. The family lives in an affordable apartment in White Plains.
“Things went from bad to worse very quickly once I got laid off from my job in 2015,” Ms. Lang said. “I filed for unemployment benefits right away but the amount I received just wasn’t enough for me to stay up to date with my rent. I started to fall further and further behind.”
After missing three month’s rent payments, Ms. Lang was facing eviction from her apartment, but she did not want her two sons to know what was going on. “My first instinct was to protect them,” she said.
Fortunately the staff at the Department of Social Services, where she went to apply for financial assistance, referred her to The Bridge Fund of Westchester. After reviewing her situation, Bridge Fund staff provided her with a $500 interest-free loan. At the
same time, Ms. Lang found employment and regained her financial stability.
Ms. Lang said her brush with homelessness had a big impact on her, and she is making some changes in her life. She just completed her associate’s degree and would like to continue her education, eventually going on to law school.
“Thanks to The Bridge Fund I can now see my way clear into the future,” she said. “The help I got from them made all the difference at a critical point in my life. I am starting a new full-time job at a Bronx high school, working as a parent coordinator.”