All, Homelessness, Stories from the Street

Hear from the women we’ve helped – Emma’s story

A few months ago I was walking back to my car in Brisbane City at night, I passed a lady sitting on the steps. I stopped to talk to her, we shared a cuppa and we talked about her experiencing homelessness and living on the streets. She is 47 years old and an alcoholic (her words) but here’s why….

Let’s call her Emma…

Emma’s mum died when giving birth to her and her dad devastated by the death of his wife, could not cope. But Emma talked about her dad dropping her off at a children’s home on her 5th birthday saying he would be back but he never returned, making her a ward of the state. She talked about how every birthday she would sit and wait out the front of the Children’s home crying for the only person she thought loved her to return. Emma talked of how this has led her to a life of depression and addictions and bad relationships, just looking for someone to love her leading to some bad toxic relationships.

She has had a very lonely life. She had no idea who I was and then proceeded to tell me (and her face lit up) of how she received a gift at a hostel last Christmas and I was crying by this stage… (as she showed me the bag) the gift was a bag filled with some wonderful things that someone who doesn’t know her gave to her. She talked about the gorgeous pink nail polish in the bag and the hairbrush, she said she has never owned a good hairbrush.

I wish I could take all the Emmas home for a safe environment but alas I know we can’t. What I do know is we can all make a difference and it’s up to us to find a way.