Metro Charities Help Homeless Student's Families

Wednesday, March 4th 2009, 5:10 pm
By: News 9

By Amy Lester, NEWS 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- The number of homeless students in Oklahoma is on the rise. Their families, hit by the economy or other hardships, are struggling to get by. But one program is expanding to meet their needs.

The families of students who go to Positive Tomorrows are at or below poverty level, or are homeless.

The school is overwhelmed with requests for help. The classes are full and the demand is up for families who send their kids to Positive Tomorrows, who have nowhere else to turn.

"I was a housewife, I didn't have to do anything," Aminah Jackson said.

That was until Jackson found herself in St. Louis, in the middle of a divorce, with no money and four kids. She and her children came back to Oklahoma, living in one relative's house after another.

"I tried to keep it at a level where my kids didn't know the intensity of what I was doing through," Jackson said. "I tried to keep a happy face and they really didn't know, hey, we don't have a place right now."

Positive Tomorrows offers supplies, clothes, counseling and an education. Just this week, the school increased class sizes, since more families are in need.

The school's not the only place stepping up. The Regional Food Bank's handing out up to 50 percent more food. Over the weekends this year, 8,000 kids will get backpacks full of food.

With guidance from community programs, people can turn their lives around. Jackson has a job, a house and an encouraging environment for her kids.

"If I didn't have them, I don't know exactly where I'd be or how much weight I'd have on me, but I don't have that much weight on me; I'm stress free," Jackson said.

Both Positive Tomorrows and the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma rely on donations.

Help Positive Tomorrows

Help the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma