Jalisa Can

African American woman in her 30s line drawing

When she first heard about Heartland Homes Jalisa said, “I felt like it was the place I was meant to be. Because I was in a very bad situation, it meant I had to move away from all of that and everyone so I could be able to just focus on myself, and my kids, and start over fresh.”

Once settled, Jalisa was even able to start her own garden, which gave her a sense of home and peace at last. She has lived with her two sons as a Heartland Homes residence for over two years. When asked where she would be without the help of the Heartland Family Service Heartland Homes program, Jalisa stated “I probably would have lost my kids, and I probably would have lost my life.”

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Carissa Weinland, Case Manager for the Heartland Family Service Heartland Homes program, says “Many people don’t know where to begin when they need help and they struggle to ask for help, especially if they don’t know what services are out there. A place like Heartland Homes can really help these families begin to turn their lives around.”

Heartland Homes is a 16-unit, facility-based, permanent supportive housing program designed to serve individuals who have experienced long-term homelessness with significant barriers to stable housing. The goal is to provide families in situations like Jalisa, safe, stable housing, and the opportunity to eventually live on their own and become self-sufficient.

Jalisa hopes to eventually own a home of her own, so her sons have a yard to play in, and maybe even get a dog. Because Jalisa found the strength to get help, she is cultivating a new beginning, Jalisa Can.