WINCHESTER, Va. - Thanks to several non-profit organizations and churches, eight Winchester-Frederick County families will be bringing in the new year, in new homes.
A Home for the Holidays was an idea started just a month ago by the United Way of the Northern Shenandoah Valley that became a reality with the help of multiple agencies and organizations across the Shenandoah valley.
"It's just a wonderful example of what goes on here in this community all of the time, where the need is identified and the community figures out a way to solve it," said Sharen Gromling of Our Health, Inc.
The organizations teamed up after realizing a critical need to assist families in getting out of motels and into apartments.
Lorie Noakes of the Blue Ridge Housing Network in Front Royal said although a motel is better than the street, living in them doesn't keep them from living paycheck to paycheck.
"It can be a viscous cycle, but we helped this one lady, she was raised in a motel here, and that's how she was raising her kids and then she found out about our program. And when you live in a motel you are spending every dime you have," said Noakes.
Home for the Holidays partner Braddock Street United Methodist church's Deacon Joanna Deitz says many of the families can break that cycle if they got assistance with the deposit needed for an apartment allowing them to save money for future months rent.
"Motel stays are a good to 12 to 14 hundred dollars for a month so every ounce of their money is going into that motel, which means getting into an apartment they don't have the security deposit or the first months rent." Dietz says.
Faith Works representative Sandra Webster was also a part of the campaign and says many families who they' ve assisted have been Frederick county residents for years, and have just fallen on hard times.
"I know that with hard work and with just the right hand up not necessarily a hand out things can get better." Webster says.
Home for the Holidays campaign set out to help 10 families, and at this point they have housed eight, but have collected money to assist the remaining two.
Deacon Dietz said she's glad she was able to help give these families a fresh start.
"Well the new year is a time where we think about new beginnings and for these families it will be a place for them to go into a place from homelessness and now into a place that's sustainable for them," said Dietz.
The home for the Holidays partners say even after the families are housed, they will continue to act as support systems as long as their needed.