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“I can start to really heal and become a whole person.”

AUTHOR: Kendra Immel


PHONE: 814-237-4673

AGENCY: Bridge of Hope Centre County

Bridge of Hope helped Kendra find a home for herself and her baby daughter, supported her as she started a new job, and connected her with Neighborhood Volunteers. With the support and guidance from Bridge of Hope, Kendra’s drive kicked in. She felt empowered by the realization that she was handling a lot of responsibility - finding a place to live, caring for her daughter, working her recovery program - and making good progress. When she found an apartment, Bridge of Hope stepped in to vouch for her and provide financial support while she was still getting back on her feet. “My Neighborhood Volunteers have been the catalyst in helping me through the past year. I talk to them on a weekly basis,” Kendra said. “They basically volunteered to be my friends. I love them.” The Neighborhood Volunteers - four local women including the director of Bridge of Hope Centre County - provide the essential emotional and social presence Kendra needs to continue on her path forward. In the beginning, though, Kendra had to work through some feelings of insecurity. “I remember meeting some of them for the first time and feeling like such a burden, like I was worthless. I wondered, Why can’t I just be normal and do these things without help?” But, admitting these feelings to her Neighborhood Volunteers helped them all turn a corner and become even closer. “They reassured me that I’m not a burden and that they want to help. They didn’t judge, they really lifted me up,” she said. “After that, we would meet up regularly and they would help me with the things I needed help with - meal planning, laundry, childcare on evenings I work late, things like that. It’s all been really crucial for me. There is no way I would be able to have had the courage or strength to come this far without these women in my life. I never would have believed I could do any of this without that support. Bridge of Hope helped me meet my basic needs and now I’m at a place where I feel safe enough to take on the emotional aspects of my past, open up old wounds, and heal,” Kendra said. “I can start to really heal and become a whole person after being broken for so long. All of that is possible because of what Bridge of Hope and my Neighborhood Volunteers have done for me in the past year. I am so grateful.”

Kendra graduated from Bridge of Hope in 2021 and has continued taking strides toward long-term stability. Contact us to learn about becoming a Neighboring Volunteer! | 814-237-4673


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