Tiffany with Zakia, Aries and Athena (l to r).

Overcoming Adversity—One Mom’s Story

 Tiffany is a proud mother – and it shows. She’s raised three strong, confident girls who are very loving and attentive to their baby brother. Her priority has always been her family but it’s not been an easy road.

Tiffany walked through our doors because of code violations in her apartment. It needed repairs her landlord was unwilling to address so Code Enforcement served her with a notice to vacate. At the time, Tiffany was 6 months pregnant with her first boy.

During her stay in shelter, Tiffany worked hard to make sure her children’s education was not interrupted and she pounded the pavement looking for a suitable place for her growing family. She soon found an apartment in Rensselaer, settled in and started work with Sarah and intern, Megan, as a client of our Bridges Program. Through Bridges, moms coming out of shelter work with staff to ensure a smooth transition so they have the resources necessary for stable living in a permanent setting. In Tiffany’s case, Sarah made sure she got to appointments including those with her OB-GYN, ensured the new baby had diapers and formula, and that the new apartment has all the furniture necessary for comfortable living.

Unfortunately soon after moving in, Code Enforcement forced an eviction due to lack of heat in the apartment which her landlord refused to address. She quickly found an apartment on River St. in Troy. It wasn’t too soon after that the kitchen ceiling came crashing down exposing pipes and molding sheetrock. Once again, Code Enforcement presented a notice to vacate this unsafe situation and the family was homeless for the third time. She was forced to leave behind most of her belongings, including furniture, until she could arrange for storage. Within a day, this apartment was broken into, items of value stolen and other items damaged by indescribable actions.

She once again made countless phone calls and found an apartment in four days. It’s a better apartment too – more room, in better condition, and on a quieter street. We helped with furniture and finding resources for clothing and beds.  Things are looking up but according to Tiffany, what puts a smile on her face is seeing that her children are happy and in a safe home once again.

Next up for Tiffany is working with Sarah to complete Social Security Disability forms and hopefully, fulfilling her dream to work as a daycare assistant.


St. Paul’s Center is an emergency shelter for mothers and children without a place to call home. Last year alone, more than 400 moms and children came to us for assistance.






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Rensselaer, NY 12144
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