Unemployed moms need help with bills

Cases requesting help to pay rent and past due utility and medical bills were received at the Lex-Care office this week.

The first came from Sandra Brown, a social worker at Cardinal Hill Hospital. Her client is a divorced mother of a 12-year-old who needs $843 to pay rent, medical and electric bills.

The woman is an experienced registered nurse who is looking for employment. Her son has autism and special needs that make home schooling a necessity. He is receiving a course of treatment that resulted from an incident at his school.

When the mother lost her job, the loss of her income caused financial difficulties, and she fell behind on her bills. She applied for and receives unemployment benefits, which will run out soon. She is enrolled in a special nursing program and hopes to return to the work force when she graduates.

Cathy Sutphen, a case manager at Russell Cave Family Resource Center, is counseling a divorced mother of five who needs $605 to pay rent, electric and water bills.

The woman did factory work for years until she developed a serious case of enlarged veins in her legs that required surgical repair. When she asked for a leave from her employer to have the procedure performed, her request was refused, and she lost her job. The surgery was successful, and she is looking for employment.

She is bilingual and has submitted applications for work. While she is looking, she sent three of her children to live with relatives because she could not afford to keep them with her.

At this time she is picking up house-cleaning jobs and has applied for food stamps, which have not been awarded yet. Her long-range plans include earning a nursing degree and having her family together again.